So it’s Earth Day. Are you thinking, What can I do to not fuck up the Earth for my children and grandchildren? Well, you should be. Seriously, we’re all going to die. Just get a load of this article in Slate today:
Potomac River Filled With Intersex Fish
An alarming new study finds that more than 80 percent of the male bass fish swimming in Washington’s Potomac River exhibit both male and female sex characteristics, the Guardian reports. In addition to having testes, many male bass have also begun producing eggs, which researchers chalk up to the “toxic stew” of weird chemicals being dumped in the river. While part of the contamination comes from agricultural runoff, the Potomac Conservancy study found that birth control, prescription drugs, and other chemically enhanced products were also contributing to piscine sexual confusion. This isn’t just limited to the Potomac, either: A similar study conducted in 2009 revealed that out of 111 sites tested nationwide, roughly a third contained intersex fish.
WHAT THE FUCK?! I swear, CoCo is going into a bubble. Immediately, if not sooner.
Okay, that was harsher than I intended. Let’s start again.
It’s Earth Day! Yay!
Yeah, sounds insincere to me too.
Anywho, I thought I would share a few of the green things HC and I are doing – or going to be doing – around the house.
1) New Windows.
Folks, if you haven’t heard, old windows make it hard to insulate your home properly. This means that you need to run your heat more in the winter and your air conditioner more in the summer. This is bad for the environment because you are wasting energy. If that’s not reason enough for you, just think about your January heating bill and your August cooling bill. Outrageously high, right? Well, replacing your windows will go a long way toward cutting your energy costs. And the federal government will give you a tax credit to do it. Free money, people!
We’ve replaced most of the windows on the second floor and hope to replace the ones of the first floor soon. And by soon, I mean before the tax credit goes away.
2) Glass containers
Like everyone else in the world, HC and I had lots and lots and lots of plasticware around the house. Then we heard about this BPA stuff. I don’t really know what BPA is or what it does, but it sounds bad. I mean, cancer-causing and leeching chemicals can’t be good, right? Here’s what Wikipedia has to say on the matter:
Bisphenol A, commonly abbreviated as BPA, is an organic compound with two phenol functional groups. It is a difunctional building block of several important plastics and plastic additives.
Suspected of being hazardous to humans since the 1930s, concerns about the use of bisphenol A in consumer products were regularly reported in the news media in 2008 after several governments issued reports questioning its safety, and some retailers have removed products containing it from their shelves. A 2010 report from the FDA raised further concerns regarding exposure of fetuses, infants, and young children.
Still not quite sure what this is, but it certainly does not sound good.
So a few months back, HC and I started getting rid of our plasticware in favor of snaplock glassware.
I seriously love the Glasslock containers. They are amazing and fantastic, and I do not regret making the change-over. We still have a few lingering pieces of plastic, but they too are on their way out.
As I’ve mentioned, I’m in the family way. This development has led to many changes including, but not limited to, my new-found sobriety, which I hate; my ever-growing body, which I also hate; and my inability to sleep for longer than three hours without having to use the restroom, which I also ALSO hate.
Anyway, this development has led to HC and I having to think about baby gear. Baby gear is a complex and complicated world of mysteries, riddles, half-truths, bald-faced lies, and lots of fear. In trying to balance cost, crazy, and fear, we’ve tried to steer clear of plastics as best we can. There are lots of great glass, BPA-free, and organic options out there. But that shit can be EX-PEN-SIVE. But, again, it’s a balancing act.
As part of the balancing act, I’ve been thinking about diapers. I hate diapers. Not just for the reason that most people hate diapers – you know, that they are smelly and gross and a lot of work and whatnot. I hate diapers for all of those reasons, to be sure. But I also hate them because they create so much garbage. Actually, it’s more than that. Disposable diapers create tons and tons of garbage that won’t biodegrade for 350 to 500 years. Yes, I said YEARS. That is insane to me. Just think about the number of diapers a baby uses and multiple that by 350 to 500 YEARS! Crazy.
While I can see that disposable diapers are terrible for the environment, I also am struggling to wrap my mind around cloth diapers. I mean, when you hear about “explosions” related to baby #2s, the last thing I want to do is laundry. I don’t want to abuse the washing machine that way.
Luckily for me, there seems to be a new middle ground in the world of diapers called gDiapers. gDiapers work this way: there’s a cloth shell called a Little gPant that has a snap-in plastic liner. Inside the liner, you add a biodegradable disposable insert or a cloth insert. Everything is machine washable, and the liners can easily be wiped down or rinsed in the sink if needed.
As you can see, they are totally adorable and Velcro in the back. They even make a Tiny gPant for newborns from 6 to 10 lbs.
In all, it’s probably a little more work than a straight disposable diaper, but there are a lot of benefits. First, the disposable inserts are flushable, compostable, or , if tossed into the trash, biodegrade in about one year’s time. Yes, ONE YEAR compared to 350-500 with a traditional disposable. Second, with gDiapers, you have the option to use cloth if and when you ever want to. Third, gDiapers are supposed to be better on a baby’s skin than a regular disposable diaper (fewer chemicals involved), leading to fewer (if any) diaper rashes. And finally, they are so ridiculously cute.
Okay, so the final point shouldn’t really matter. But maybe you should look at them again.
C'mon... so fucking cute!
Anyway, happy Earth day! And remember – do your part not to fuck up the planet for the rest of us.
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