Well, it has indeed been a long time since I have posted. What a backslider I have become. Shame on me. First it was work then it was other excuses. None of them good. I sort of forgot about weighing my mail and all too. I do seem to be getting just as much as before though. Even though I have called tons of mailers and told them to turn it off. They don't turn it off even when you ask them. I think the system is on auto-pilot and is out of their control. I even posted my name and address with the Direct Mail Marketing Association and paid my few bucks to get off the list. Didn't help yet. I'm still hauling tubs of the stuff to the recycle. The odd thing is that a good percentage of the junk mail are pleas to "help save the earth, animals, air, water, trees, mountains, valleys, people.... Kind of defeating the purpose if you ask me. Why don't they get out in the streets and beg for money if they really want to save the earth. Or how about hauling people out to the woods en masse, and let them see what the beauty of nature is really like...then hit them up for the money to save it. I guess that would use a little fuel at first but it might get people to thinking more than a piece of junk mail printed with soy ink.
I am happy to report though that my automobile fuel bill is still declining rapidly and is now only about 2/3 of what it was before. My goal is to eventually only use flex and rental cars but the wife has not reached my level of fanaticism yet so... This month brings a small vacation though so it will go up a little, but we are staying close to home and not flying so the actual amount of fuel used will be considerably less than other vacations months when you eliminate the jet fuel we would have consumed. We are also committed to making this a relaxing vacation and not drive all over kingdom come to "have fun" like we normally do. I do love a road trip and usually log thousands of miles. Not this time. Only about 400 total for the whole trip, including side ventures. Even the rafting trip we have planned is via bus and the car will just stay parked. I have also mapped out some of the things we want to see and plan to group them together by locale. Most of all I am looking forward to the sun. Bring it on.
I have just started a wonderful book called "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" by Barbara Kingsolver. It is the true story of how they moved from the deserts of New Mexico with it's water that would kill goldfish to live as close to the land as they could. She talks about raising animals for food which does not fit my plant-based lifestyle but any move away from factory farming is a plus. Ultimately my desire is to do much the same without raising livestock. However living in Oregon I don't have to move far to accomplish it. Just need a little more space to put out some small raised gardens. Maybe a small glass enclosure or two for a winter garden.
Well, I hope to get back to posting every day. I haven't given up on my efforts. Have gotten a few dirty looks at the grocery store when I used my cloth produce bags, rather than the see-through plastic bags. Really, is it that much more work to open the bag and look inside? Oh well, I still plan to use them. It has really drastically reduced the amount of plastic I haul to the recycle.
I have been keeping close tabs on the "No Impact Man" project and Colin is now facing many of the grey conundrums that appear whenever you try to reduce your impact in this modern world. It is simply impossible to move to a no impact life in a mid town apartment. The biggest being refrigeration and, when winter returns, heat. Most likely if the temperature hits 100 degrees in August they will be driven from their air-conditionless walk up. We humans are a bit like lizards and need just the right temperature to survive. Other societies that live closer to nature do not insist on living in tight gypsum boxes and therefore don't need to worry about this. We as Americans have our codes and rules that drive us away from each other and into our cubicles. Wait, isn't that the first terror in nearly every sci-fi novel? The isolation?
Perhaps when the last drop of oil runs through the veins of our modern world we all finally all look at each other and look for the natural solutions rather than the technical. It is probably wise to learn now how to live without modernity and pass it on through the generations. Hmm...
If anybody is listening, I wish you well.