If we do not permit the earth to produce beauty and joy, it will in the end not produce food, either. Joseph Wood Krutch

Friday, August 24, 2007

How to recycle your move

I believe boxes, like cats, should have nine lives. If you've moved recently you probably discovered boxes are just not very easy to come by anymore. In the olden days one went down to the local grocery and there was a bin right up front, just inside the door, where they threw all the empty boxes. The early bird always got the best boxes and most of them disappeared every day. Not anymore. Now the boxes go to the back stockroom, get shoved through a hole in the wall, are crushed, then are sent off to be remanufactured into a brand new box. I am not clear why that makes sense, economically or any other way, but it must because the stores invest major money in these huge crushing machines. Just another example of how our society has become geared toward disposability and not reuse.

Unless you know someone who has a cousin who knows a guy that has a sister with a boyfriend that works in the back of a store you are pretty much out of luck. I am fortunate to be married to someone that knows a guy in the basement of the hospital and if she went first thing in the morning she could get all the boxes we needed. Most I fear are not so fortunate though.

Here is an option some may not have considered. FreeCycle. After my recent move I posted my stash of lightly used boxes on FreeCycle. They were spoken for in literally five minutes after hitting the web. I was life two for the boxes and through Freecycle these boxes are now seeing a third life. Since this person intends to FreeCycle them when she gets to Boston these boxes will then have four lives and still be going strong. So, if you are moving and need boxes, post it on your local FreeCycle site. Have boxes you are done with? Post those too. It is a great way to recycle your move. Oh, you could also pass along any excelsior or bubble wrap you used as well. Reduce, REUSE, Recycle.

Afterthought: Don't stop at boxes. Put everything you don't want on FreeCycle. You would be amazed at what people are looking for out there. It may seem like junk but there may be an artist looking for exactly what you have. Freecycle.

Green Tip: Got a clogged drain? Forget the noxious chemicals. Boil a large pot of water. Add one cup of Baking Soda and once cup of vinegar all at once. Pour down the drain immediately. If your drain was fully clogged then let water flow until it clears completely. Cheap and effective. Try putting this concoction down your drains once a month to keep them cleared too.

If you want to see an endangered species, get up and look in the mirror.
John Young, Apollo astronaut

OK, that one was cynical but realistic. Here's the positive one.

We don't need to increase our goods nearly as much as we need to scale down our wants. Not wanting something is as good as possessing it.

Donald Horban

Yeah, I like that one. It's a lesson I am still learning.

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