Wednesday, March 17, 2010

A Different Kind of Green for St. Patrick's Day

St. Patty's Day is about many types of green. Green clothing that represents Irish pride, greenbacks used to buy one off shamrock paraphernalia, green beer drank in copious amounts, and green faces when you go a bit overboard.

I would like, however, to talk about another type of green: green living. Today is one of those days when you really see the excess of our culture. Essentially, we desecrate a religious by buying all these tchotchkes to celebrate and also by getting rip roaring drunk. Not that I will be attending church today or anything, but I thought it might be a good time for a post on eco-awareness.

I also just finished this amazing book by Raj Patel called The Value of Nothing: How to Reshape Market Society and Redefine Democracy, which despite some out there ideas is a pretty solid read on how to change society for the better in regards to the environment and treating others humanely. So, maybe I just have it on the brain!

Enough with the diatribe as I am sure you like me have some serious drinking to do today!

Here is a list of 5 unusual ways you can go green:

1. Use Open Source Software: OS software can run leaner and meaner thanks to the millions of coders working on the program. The more efficient the code the more efficient the computer runs and as a result the more green your web surfing becomes. A great example of this is Linux, which I have yet to use myself as I am an Apple fangirl. It is actually more customizable than the MAC OS and better yet it is free! The only reason I have not made the big switch is because I am tied into Apple due to programs like Adobe Creative Suite.

2. Cut Back on the Booze: I know it is a strange thing to say on St. Patrick's Day, but by cutting back just a smidge on your drinking you can help save the environment. According to Treehugger, if I would save myself $1,304 and the earth 1,472 lbs of CO2 per year! Translation: that could put one hell of a fancy handbag on my arm.

3. Buy Vintage: I love vintage. If there was a vintage god, I would visit it's temple everyday and pray for lovely vintage goodies to rain down upon me. Since, unfortunately, that does not exist in real life I depend on awesome re-sellers. In NYC, I normally go to either HousingWorks or this thrift store in the 20s whose name escapes me right now. (I guess I started a bit too early - eh?) In cyberspace, I go to VintageSparkles and LA Vintage. The former has an awesome selection of accessories, and the latter believe it or not has PLUS SIZE vintage!

4. Join Shared Ownership Programs: I love movies. I literally cannot resist buying the bargain basement priced DVDs from Target. It is my secret shame, because obviously I don't watch these movies often enough to justify owning them. That is why I joined Netflix. The same goes for driving and living in the city, which is why we chucked the car and joined ZipCar. Books are another sore spot for me as I love them, but I normally never read them more than once. That is where companies like BookSwim come in for people like me. Not only does it curb spending, but helps me live a little bit greener. Finally, I can't consider myself a fashion blogger without mentioning Avelle formally known as Bag, Borrow, or Steal. Normally, I get to stare at these pieces behind glass but this company puts them within reach.

5. Mend What You Own: We live in a disposable culture. I mean when is the last time you ever heard someone say they were going to mend their socks? I buy pretty expensive shoes when I can scrape together the cash, and I make sure that I maximize the purchase by making sure they are in tip top shape by visiting a cobbler on the regular. I also have had the lining on my coats repaired numerous times, because plus size limitations aside I am extremely discerning when it comes to my clothes. This not only helps me save money and stimulate the economy at the same - it also helps me green my life a bit by cutting down on unnecessary purchases.

I hope that was helpful and I promise I have an awesome post coming up soon. I just had an interview to prepare for and that took a lot out of me!

Enjoy your day of drunken debauchery, religious observance, or regular old Wednesday goodness!

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