Monday, April 21, 2008

Earth Day 2008--One Change at a Time

With Earth Day quickly approaching, like tomorrow, Nashville decided to hold its celebration/awareness day on Saturday. It was a dismal day and I have to say not quite the turnout I had hoped for. Although I despise crowds, I truly hoped there would have been a lot more people running around. Gee whiz, we all need to wise up to this stuff and learn as much as we can on how each one of us individually can make a difference. We've been abusing this planet and our bodies for way too long. It's time to wake up and smell the pesticide-free roses!

Let's all take a moment and make a decision to do one thing, shall we? Can we? We can choose one thing that will change our environment, can't we, easily enough? (Well, if you choose to make more than one change, good for you!) But one thing, c'mon. One change from each of us will truly add up! Last week, as I was pondering Earth day, I made the conscious decision to quit using plastic bags. I have my Whole Foods cloth bags that I keep in my car, I have a little fold out bag that I carry in my purse and I'm trying to get Vallen, of Queenly Things, to begin selling her lovely homemade bags made from old pillow cases. She says they are way too wonky to sell. I say the wonkier the better! (Sorry Val, but I actually think you are on to something!) In any case, you get my drift. These plastic bags are so ingrained in our shopping experience, it's amazing how you (or at least I) have to remind yourself to say "no plastic bag, please," and I either carry it out naked or I whip my little bag out of my purse. If you want to learn about how these bags are impacting our environment, please click here. Of course, there are a lot of other ways you can choose to make a difference. Take a look at the Earth Day Network site. It is chock full of information. Take a look and see what's happening tomorrow in your town. I have to admit to being envious of those in larger cities. I sure wish I were back up in DC. I truly miss the HUGE celebration there. I remember taking the teenager to his first Earth Day in 1990 and Tom Cruise was "the" big name speaker. He was just a baby back then too!

Ok, I'm stepping off of my soapbox and getting back to our little gathering in Nashville. I grabbed a lot of information to go through and signed up for a lot of stuff around town that perhaps I can get involved in. I especially enjoyed speaking to the lady who started "Tennessee Green" in our local newspaper. I told her about my worries about the Nashville area using so much Styrofoam. I'm hoping the more people I tell, the better the chance of our restaurants and coffee houses here switching to something a little more environmentally healthy. I am AMAZED at how much Styrofoam is used here. And, I suppose you have to actually come from somewhere else where it is not used, consciously, to notice it. I was flabbergasted when we first moved here to even see the stuff. Now that I've been her for over seven years, I've become desensitized. Well, not any more. I've written to several larger coffee shops that use it here and have asked that they move to some other type of containers. (Oh gee, I think I'm back on the soapbox, again. Slowly climbing down. Sorry.)

Ok, ok, we arrived at Centennial Park and came upon a birthday party of sorts. It was lovely Rita's birthday party (name changed for protection). There were all kinds of doggies partying it up with lovely Rita. And I have to say, I loved Miss Rita's friend's boots. Too cool.

There was music, of course. Jen Foster was on the stage when we arrived.

We came upon Walden's Puddle's booth which had all kinds of critters that had been rescued, including this sleeping owl and opossum.

The beautiful replica of the Parthenon as a back drop.

And as we were leaving, a reminder of some one's birthday party. I think they left it there for me to photograph, don't you?

I'll leave you with some ideas on how you can make a difference in your daily routines that will help our environment and ourselves. I found No. 5 to be fascinating. Pretty scary stuff. (You can click on the photo to enlarge.)


Vallen said...

I'm trying the wonky things out today. I'll let you know how it goes.

Artsy Etc. said...

I too, dislike plastic bags. I sometimes see them floating in the sky like ugly kites. Nice post. I'm celebrating Earth Day too.

Beth said...

Great post Girlfriend. Sounds like you had a fun day even if was dismal. I do the cloth napkins and I am going to start using cloth bags for groceries. I dont' do styrofoam either.
Miss U!

robin bird said...

you are so dilligently committed to doing stay right there on your spoap box. we all need a guide, teacher or mentor and you are always remnding us to care about and for others. the earth is included in the "others" category!

oh and i adore rita's owners boot too ;)

Jeanie said...

This is a great post (and the one for today, too -- honoring Earth Day). Sounds like you had quite a marvy time! Looks like great fun with wonderful images to show for it.

One of the most popular pledge thank yous here were the reusable cloth grocery bags. Very nice and earthy!

MarkMcL said...


I never travel without a knotted up carrier bag. Every day in the sandwich shop I always get funny looks when I say "No bag" (how hard is it to carry a salad and a soup a few hundred yards) and "No plastic cutlery" (how hard is is to wipe it clean and use again tomorrow).

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead


MarkMcL (aka Mr English)

bandelle said...

Good on you, Rosa. It's true that if we all did just one thing to help then that would definitely add up. I have started using cloth shopping bags too. And if I forget, I ask the stores to stuff as many items in as possible in the plastic bags. Then I try to use those as our trash bags during the week. A small thing but hope it helps.

Linda said...

Here in Provence you can't get plastic bags at the grocery stores. You have to buy their permanent bags or bring your own. I can still get them in Paris, though. I have to admit that I miss them. I used them for all sorts of things, mainly kitty litter and garbage.



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