Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Yeah Chip!

Ten years ago, I lived with my sister, Jenny, in Seattle. She and I had so much fun the summer of 1999: we climbed mountains, went to concerts, played Kadima, and ran around Greenlake. Around that time, her friend, Chip (photo right), organized a mobile-making party where friends could come and make balanced works of art that spun in the breeze. His invitation read something like, "Get Mobilized!" (I loved the pun.)

So Jenny, Chip, and I went around town to collect mobile-making supplies. Jenny zipped us over to some industrial site near Ballard. We got out of the jeep, walked up to the dumpster, and Jenny, without pause, jumped into the dumpster in her bright orange sundress. She bent down, and then popped up, holding up all of her prizes: cool, rusty metal parts that would be great for a mobile. With her big smile, she said, "These would be perfect!"

That was the same summer that Chip started his little online environmental newsletter.

I relate this story because, somewhat like a mobile, it feels like our paths have come full circle. Now, I jump in dumpsters, Jenny plays with words (with their kids, Ellis and Sebastian), and Chip just received a big prize. Go Chip! I am so proud of you.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Pro-Recession, Less Waste.

The Oregonian recently published a story on how Oregonians threw away less stuff in 2008 compared to 2007.

Tighter wallets = more mindful consumption.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Running Water for Runners at Public Events: Water Event Station

On August 23, 2009, I volunteered for the illustrious Freshwater Trust's Portland Triathlon. In addition to yelling, "Right turn. Right turn, here!" for four hours, I got to check out the City of Portland's W.E.S., or Water Event Station.

The Portland Water Bureau hooks a glorified spigot into the water main (or fire hydrant), and supplies running water for a bunch of thirsty runners and event-goers. The portable, public fontain with little nozzles for easy refills is a great option for events seeking to reduce the use of plastic water bottles.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Umbra on Bubble Wrap

I do love Umbra, Grist's Advice Columnist of Reason and Wit.
In her post today, on recycling bubble wrap, she wrote,

"Congratulations and best wishes for a long and happy marriage. You may wish to retain a portion of the bubble wrap for use during periods of marital fragility."