The Being Green Thread (Thanks Jake!)

funny you posted this sean, i was thinking about starting a "green" post to see what folks were doing. granted, my scrambler isn't exactly earth friendly but i don't drive it all the time and for the tahoe, i'm just waiting for either toyota or honda to step to the plate with a hybrid.

big cars are on the way out...unless you live under the bubble in DET.

Since Jake thought it would be a good idea but has not gotten around to it, I thought I would start it for him. So here's the Being Green thread.

What do you do to be Green?

- drive a Saturn and am averaging 28.62 mpg
- recycle metal, paper and plastic
- re-use bags, jars, boxed and containers as much as possible until they get too worn out to use
- bring my own bags to the grocery store to reduce amount of plastic bags I bring home
- use said plastic grocery bags for doggie cleanup
- reuse ziploc bags. Weird, maybe? Rinse them out, hang them over the dishrack to dry, and keep using them over and over. When they get too worn out, use them for taking dog food or treats on walks, or storing crayons, matches, photos, any of the hundreds of assorted little things that need a utilitarian container
- as much as I can, eat seasonal produce, locally grown veggies, and the venison and fresh caught fish in the freezer vs. meat shipped here from far off places
- wear sweaters in winter to keep heating costs down
- using ceilng fans on "low" in summer to help circulate cool air, allowing AC to be run at around 75 and still keep house cool

I am somewhat uncertain about the "green" value of certain products though, like recycled paper, since the process of rendering old paper into new paper is more environmentally unsound than the one used to make paper out of tree pulp. Trees are grown as a crop and forests are managed to keep producing timber and pulp. Which sort of contradicts the whole paper-recycling thing above...I am ambivalent about the benefits but something in me keeps hoping we will find a better way. The few people who are searching for ways to make recycling efficient, clean, and profitable need materials with which to experiment.
Last edited:
Thank Jake it was his idea :D

I use Nalgene bottles. Anything refillable is better than a throwaway bottle.

I think being less-than-rich is a great teacher of economy. I find myself reusing lots of things that might otherwise be thoughtlessly tossed. And I make my purchasing decisions much more carefully. Durability and the depreciation curve are more important considerations than how much something will cost.


entirely thrilled
i ride my bike alot of places that i otherwise would drive too, but i don't think that makes up for me driving a truck that get's 15-20 mpg as a personal vehicle, and driving a mason dump truck around all day for work. so, unfortunately, i'm not very green right now. but, i also didn't drive till i was 22, riding bikes instead, and didn't drive much during my two years in nyc after i got my liscence, or at all during the 2.5 years i was trapsing about the land by bicycle. then carpooled my first year back. so i guess that's sort of got me ahead of the game. but i think the whole dump truck thing is catching up....


A strong 7
Major Initiatives in Our House:

- getting colin out of night-time pullups. bonus is that sarah is showing signs of wanting to potty train, too;
- purchasing produce from the farmers market, local farms and the co-op;
- re-usable grocery sacks;
- trying to get more organic foods in the diet, while not going bankrupt at the same time. monthly runs to trader joe's helps...

We are also big on the recycling and mindful of "waste" in general, but are still using bottled (our water tastes horrible, even using a water softener). The water cooler will be put into use once the kitchen is done.


Mayor McCheese
Team MTBNJ Halter's
Why not use a water filter?

I think most organice fruit/veggies comes from an average of 2000 miles away or something like that.
Why not use a water filter?

I think most organice fruit/veggies comes from an average of 2000 miles away or something like that.

There are numerous organic farms in NJ/NY/PA that feed local farmer's markets, just have to be choosy about the market you patronize.

Norm is right, though. Organic or not, most of our produce is grown far away and shipped to us. Think of the nutrient depletion that occurs from field to plate when your food takes 12 days to get to you, and possibly languishes another week or so in the fridge.

I heard an interesting piece on the radio today about America's growing dependence on imported food. Veggies, fruits, meats, and dairy products grown outside of our borders and shipped in to stock the market shelves. It is spurring some NJ legislators to look at incentives to keep farmland and encourage young people to take up farming so locally grown food will continue to be available.

This made me do a little "yipee" whoop in the car. I have a fondness for farms, I used to work on one when I was younger, worked there from age 14 to 19. It is very hard, dirty work. But man is it satisfying to come home everyday, exhausted, well-fed, and with a bushel full of fresh corn, tomatoes, and assorted fruits and veggies. I loved my farm job. Sometimes I daydream about having a small farm of my own one day - not a likely prospect in NJ with the cost of land, though.


Strong like bull, smart like tractor
Team MTBNJ Halter's
first of all: to those who don't think global warming is real, it is. you will not find a real scientist to dispute this claim. secondly, global warming is a furry, happy term for what is more often referred to in the global scientific community as 'catastrophic climate change'. you're all pretty smart folks, so i don't think i need to go into that one. the thing is this: we're pretty much sitting on the precipice of the 29th day. we can still act, and while J_G_R's efforts are certainly admirable and every little bit truly does help, BIG changes at much higher levels need to be made. if not, either our children or our children's children will look at our generation and say: 'why didn't you do anything? you could have stopped it. you really could have made a difference.' it's our proverbial cross to bear.

the reality is not as pretty as the media spins it. why? b/c it's completely out of our control. examples:

problem: dictator in iraq? solution: bomb the shat outta 'em.
problem: poverty? solution: raise money, sent to <insert your favorite
country here>
problem: aids? solution: billions spent to find a cure; doctors sent across the globe.
problem: global "warming": solution: stick head in sand, pray it just all 'goes away'.

now, this isn't to say i'm a doomsdayer. i am optimistic that things will get better...but not before they get kinda worse.

there is simply NO reason why every car made isn't a hybrid. the american public is ready. if everyone drove a hybrid we'd cut gas consumption by numbers i can't even fathom.

the bottom line is the government needs to step in, REALLY incent people to change. make it profitable. make it easier. make it cheaper. take the short term loss for the long term win.

ok, off my soap box. this is something i could literally go on for pages about.


Mayor McCheese
Team MTBNJ Halter's
It's actually not a slam dunk that global warming is anything to do with us. I'm sure people don't help but this is a good read:

This backs up that claim pretty well since no humans live on Mars:

There was a rebuttal to the BBC program but I don't know where that link is.

Now before anyone goes knee-jerk on me, I think you need to give these perspectives some thought. Personally I don't claim to know what the real answer is but the claim that, "to those who don't think global warming is real, it is. you will not find a real scientist to dispute this claim" makes me have to call bullshit. Your statement implies that people are solely the cause for global warming when that's in doubt.

I'm generally as liberal as anyone I know. But I'm also a realist and I hate the bullshit politcal hot potato these issues become. If our society was around during the last ice age people would be blaming our society. If you disagree with that I don't think you can claim any objectivity.

NJ Jess

Active Member

I love my garden. I'm having a "light" year with only 7 tomato plants, 6 eggplants, 6 squash/zucchini, 12 different types of peppers, 2 cantalopes, 4 watermelon, 6 okra, and lots of flowers.

I believe it would be great if everyone planted more trees and plants. I don't think they would take so much water if their roots are covered. I have rain water catches to water my garden. Since our road doesn't have sewer drains, I made a french drain from the road to my plants. Works great, should see the grapes!

I also have 2 compost piles. My neighbors give me their grass clipping,..I don't have much lawn. And I have a barrel of leave mulch from this past fall. They would compost a bit faster if the kids in the neighborhood wouldn't keep taking my worms, but alas,..they are kids.


New Member
Norm, did you notice the "Sponsored by" icon in your second article? The first one reads a bit like a Terry Pratchett novel. Those Brits sure are funny.

Who knows what's causing what at those global scales. All I see is more roads, malls, parking lots, mc mansions, cages driven around by one person, mountains of trash lining up my streets every Tuesday morning (how the hell do people do to generate THAT much trash in a week??), ...

I get 20 miles per bagel, get regularly honked and cursed at but I still find it worthwhile.

Last edited:
I get 20 miles per bagel, get regularly honked and cursed at but I still find it worthwhile it.


:rofl: that's cute.

Have you noticed lately the micro-packaging of food and other goods? I get a little nuts when I see all of the individually wrapped cakes and cookies that are then put into larger bags. Or the "100 calorie packs" of snacks. Or the monstrous amount of plastic packaging for a face moisturizer - just something I noticed at the store the other day. A bottle of safety-sealed face moisturizer was further encased in cardboard and then further encased in a plastic clamshell that had to be cut open with scissors.

Items like that are how people generate that much trash in a week. Not to mention we live in a consumer society where planned obsolescence is the order of the day for the majority of goods we purchase - even automobiles have a pre-set lifespan to ensure a viable market for more automobiles down the road. Sometimes you can outwit the determined lifespan of an object, but usually we do not want to be bothered fixing something that is broken when a new one can be had for just some money and no hassle.

The issues of plastics and packaging seems to be neglected in the discourse over petroleum dependence. You cannot have plastic, certain paints, organic solvents, vehicle fluids, carpeting for your home, windows, microfleece, bike shorts - the list goes on - without petroleum. Considering the tremendous advantages offered by all of the above products and the many not mentioned, we need to find an alternative to much, much more than just gasoline fuel for our cars.


Strong like bull, smart like tractor
Team MTBNJ Halter's
i'm not going to get into it, but lets just say this: even if global warming IS a sham and we spend good money and change our lifestyles a little, it's a good thing. lets say it's not, and we say 'meh, global-schmobal' we were here during the last ice age, blah, blah, blah and do nothing. and it turns out that it IS real. well, the former implacations are FAR more dire than latter. i'd rather be cautious. and, just to play on your evolutionary parallel, humans didn't get through the ice age b/c they were better equipped and furry. it was b/c they were smart.

norm, you can call BS all you'd like. that's fine. and sure, that was a generalization but the truth is very close to that. don't read mcpaper and mcmagazine and believe it.

i remember this one time a talented gentleman wrote a far fetched book, sort of factual book about a killer shark that terrorized an entire island. now 90% of the sharks are dead. who do you rekkon caused that? some wild, natural swing in the ocean temps? a newly evolved apex predator? it's the latter, but not so newly evolved.

edit: norm, this isn't directed at you. i just happened to be responding to a couple of your points.
Last edited:


Mayor McCheese
Team MTBNJ Halter's

I'm not saying we should do nothing, just what I see in front of me. I think rampant consummerism is atrocious regardless of it being good/bad/indifferent to the planet. To say that this or that is the truth is presumptuous, which is why I never proclaim: X is the truth! I mean I'm 35 and have been wrong 45,000 times in my life which is what I classify as experience and perspective. I almost never hold a belief that strongly because I understand any belief I have today may be turned on its ear tomorrow. I don't think you can have absolute knowledge about anything. Basically, I don't think anyone will really ever know the truth. Example: Doctors no idea how the minute details of pregnancy works. I'm sure there are countless examples on top of that.

Your shark example is just taking anything and blaming humans. 99.9% of the species that have ever existed are now extinct. 99.8% of them (or more) were gone before humans had anything to do with the environment. Yet now everything that goes extinct is the fault of humanity. I'm not sure how that works.


Strong like bull, smart like tractor
Team MTBNJ Halter's
99.9% of the species that have ever existed are now extinct. 99.8% of them (or more) were gone before humans had anything to do with the environment. Yet now everything that goes extinct is the fault of humanity. I'm not sure how that works.

i 100% agree with this, however the "villification" of the shark has done much more harm than good. ignorance is to blame.

and, in fact, i've been wrong 47,000 times. 40,000 of them since i got married four years ago but that's a WHOLE different thread. :D
Science may never come up with a definitive answer to the global warming question. People are still doubting Darwin simply because the exact mechanism that causes evolution cannot be locked down and explained in plain English, so we contend with creationism and intelligent design. Global warming will be doubted and debated for much the same reason. People usually need proof before they will change their ways.

FWIW I think its part anthropogenic and part the natural change of the global climate. The change occurs on such a large scale that we did not notice it until long-term trend analysis pointed out the rise in average annual temps, etc. Perhaps we accelerated the inevitable, I do not know.

What I do know is that I see fewer and fewer people acting in the spirit of stewardship. Using less, reusing more, and encouraging that same behavior in our children, family, friends, and neighbors seems near impossible but its a start.


Something I've been pondering on, late at night, and partly referring to the comment 99.9% of living things that every existed are now extinct; what if, in the great scheme of things, it's our turn to become extinct?

There's a lot of chat about "we must do this because it's better for the planet", but quite frankly the planet will take care of itself and re-evolve even if/when we screw it up. I think a more realistic comment would be "we must do this if WE want to survive on this planet..."

Another possible radical thought - let's not have so many kids. If there weren't as many humans then there wouldn't be as many human issues...


Global Warming is like believing in God. You might as well; as the implications of it's existence outweigh the implications of it's non-existence.

Your shark example is just taking anything and blaming humans. 99.9% of the species that have ever existed are now extinct. 99.8% of them (or more) were gone before humans had anything to do with the environment.

Cycle of life. If the world was not perpetually keeping itself in balance it would die along with everything on it.
Last edited by a moderator:
Top Bottom