And climb the stairs to the beach...

Monday, November 05, 2007

Morning Folks November 5 2007

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Everybody’s going green these days. And Ed and I found ourselves going a little green without even knowing it. Ed wanted cloth napkins to bring with his lunch everday.

He thought it would add a little something to his lunchbreak.

So, we bought a few inexpensive cotton napkins in a variety of colors at our local department store.
I liked the idea of using cloth napkins because they seem kind of homey, country...Southern. So I went back and got enough for us to use everyday at home.

The first night I set the table with them, I felt like we were in an episode of Leave it to Beaver. Or that we should be eating with Aunt Bea, Opie and Andy.
Or maybe Lassie and Jeff would come flying in, screen door banging in their wake. (They probably had paper napkins by the time Timmy came around.)
Now these aren’t the fancy cloth napkins I have that match the table cloth and have to be ironed. These are nice hearty gingham that I just toss in the washer and dryer. And it is really a nice change.

As many of you know, I moved from the northeast to Tennessee almost a year ago. And as many of you also know, there is a certain amount of culture shock between those two locations. But aside from the obvious differences in the demographic profiles, one of the differences I see every day when I finish with a Diet Pepsi bottle or use the last drop of Tide or Ed finishes the Sudoku in the Chattanooga Times Free Press, is that there is virtually no recycling down here.
There is a recycling center about 5 miles from here, open for a few hours and only 3 days a week.
But there is no 5 cent deposit on your Mr. Pibbs or Dr. Pepper cans; no recycling bins provided by the trash companies who pick up your trash twice a week without fail;

and no Boy Scouts doing paper drives, at least none that I know of.

At first, it felt like a guilty pleasure and sort of freeing to get rid of the paper every day by just dumping it in the trash. It is such a pain to have them pile up in the garage.
And just tossing those soda cans instead of having to bring them down to the store to redeem the deposit was so much easier.

But I feel very guilty about that and realize that here, where recycling is really inconvenient and not mandated, it takes some real effort to do it.
I will concede that in this land of SUVs and pickup trucks, (with or without gun racks) over $70 million dollars in grants and incentives are in this year’s state budget to develop and implement the use of alternative fuel. Mandates have been issued and there are already 20 biodiesel fuel stations in Chattanooga alone.

In fact recently the Chattanooga City Council approved a contract with a company to turn the "sludge" from the landfill into bio-diesel fuel. They anticipate 2,000 gallons of fuel from every 60 wet tons of sludge and they produce 400 wet tons every single day. (Eeeeeeeeeyoooooo)

I always grumbled about recycling back up north. Sort of felt like it was something they forced us to do, against our will. Voted against the bottle bill and everything. But now, living in the Volunteer State, land of the Great Smokies and Lookout Mountain;

home to favorite sons Al Gore, Fred Thompson,

Morgan Freeman and Justin Timberlake,

and favorite daughters Tina, Dolly and Oprah and Aretha,

How can I help but to take care of this place in some small way? So, cloth napkins are a start. Who knows what's next?

Have a great day.

1 comment:

  1. Good chance that I'll be living in the Volunteer state next year. Thinking I'll transfer to Franklin when we open a new office next year.


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