Friday, October 12, 2012

becaue we love IKEA

an excerpt from Cheap: The High Cost of Discount Culture by Ellen Ruppel Shell 

Few IKEA outlets in the US are accessible by public transportation and since the company does not support a home delivery service, customers willing and able to take public transport rarely do so. As a result, the traffic jams surrounding IKEA stores are so gnarly that customers are discouraged from shopping on weekends when lines of idling cars can back up for miles. IKEA touts its 'green side' by lighting its stores with low-wattage bulbs and charging extra for plastic bags while its clientele burns through gallon after gallon of fuel to buy disposable tables and lamps. Asked his assessment of company practices, MIT-trained urban development expert Wig Zamore said: "IKEA is the least sustainable retailer on the planet."


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

because we didn't re-elect this guy

In the late 1970s then President Jimmy Carter warned Americans that "too many of us now tend to worship self-indulgence and consumption," and that the "piling up of material goods" led to an "emptiness of lives which have no confidence or purpose."
Can you believe it? Thirty five years ago we had a president who put on a sweater and admonished us to turn down our thermostats. Then he told us not to go out and buy stuff because it wouldn't make us happy.
No wonder he didn't get re-elected.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

40+ ingredients

Enriched wheat flour [flour, barley malt, ferrous sulfate (iron), "8" vitamins (niacin, Thiamine mononitrate (B1), riboflavin (B2), folic acid)], dextrose, vegetable shortening (soybean, palm and hydrogenated cottonseed oil), water, sugar. Contains 2% or less of: nonfat milk, soy flour, mono and diglycerides, tapioca dextrin, corn dextrin, guar gum, karaya gum, cornstarch, cellulose gum, enzymes, modified corn starch, citric acid, wheat starch, partially hydrogenated vegetable shortening (soybean and cottonseed oil), titanium dioxide (color), extracts of aninatto and turmeric (color), natural and artificial flavors, sorbic acid and sodium propionate and potassium sorbate and calcium propionate (to retain freshness). Contains wheat, milk, soybeans and egg.

These are the 40+ ingredients in mini-powdered doughnuts.
Interesting that "8" vitamins seems to break down to only four ingredients. Guess that's why the number eight is in parenthesis.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

ten minutes

Ten minutes. The amount of time that elapsed before we glimpsed trash floating in the Bay of Fundy from the deck of the Princess of Acadia.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

because we can't save the beach

Entering something in the youth exhibit at the county fair was kind of a requirement at our house this year so C and I went down the list looking for a category we could pull something together in quickly. Entering was a requirement you see but planning ahead not so much.
Anyway, we found a category titled "10 Things that Do Not Belong on the Beach."
"Easy," we agreed.
"We could go down to Old Silver around 6 or 7 PM." I suggested.
"I bet we could find ten things in ten minutes!"
Alas we were wrong.
We found ten things in less than two minutes.
At the end of the day Old Silver was disgusting. There was trash everywhere and what's worse - there were people still on the beach, plenty of them, all navigating their way around the trash to get down to the water.
Ugh. Who cleans that up? The lifeguards? The DPW? I assume a fleet of someones are out there at 6AM before the beach opens (no wonder we have to close the beaches it at night), no way I'd pay $20 to park there and sun myself among the remains of someone's upturned trash can.
Here are some of our shots from the night. I have to assume every night is more of the same. We did not photograph the dirty diaper, the cigarette butt, or the used prophylactic (technically that was in the beach parking lot).