Thursday, January 03, 2008

Environmental Products

Save the environment!! I have been scouring endless sites to find something that I can really buy and reduce the burden on our fast crumbling planet.

All I could lay my hands on were products which were:

1. Too bulky and oversized for a small place like mine (Solar, wind items)
2. Too expensive (Again solar cookers)
3. Too self involved, like this never ending range of herbal skin products, which I don't see how are going to save the earth
4. Irrelevant and environmentally damaging products like wooden toys which would have involved a bit of tree cutting I assume
5. Recycled Paper - good, but its not only very expensive to be substituted for paper, but also very shabbily bound and too unwieldy

And then the environmentalists crying hoarse about global warming wonder why we are not going green and behaving like deaf mutts. Consider all the countries which are really damaging this pretty green earth...hell, consider India...
With a majority of the population struggling for a one time meal, you can't expect them to buy recycled paper for their morning roadside business, or a solar cooker to cook yesterday's leftovers from some restaurant.
So where does that leave us? What other options do we have here?
Maybe tell people to buy lesser cars? Well, for all those egoistic I've-newly-found-wealth IT industry show offs, it's a hard argument to push down their throats. Or in cities like Pune, with a rotten public transport system, I'd rather go anywhere by auto than a bus.

My main aim of the rant being, if any change has to take place, the alternatives should be cheaper, faster, and better than the smoke and toxic spewing instruments we have. They also need smarter marketing than just saying they are environmentally friendly, because even though that sounds like a moral compulsion, people are expert at arguing against compunctions.

After all, the argument of a dying world doesn't click in the brain as fast as anything related to money and convenience does.

PS: Both my homes are now totally bulb free. We've gone in for the CFLs which reduce harmful CO2 emissions. They are expensive but more than make up for the initial cost by having a really long life and also come with a year's warranty. I personally also prefer the white light of the CFLs to the bright yellow blobs.
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Wednesday, January 02, 2008


2007 just ended, well 2 days back...
In keeping with the tradition, we planned a careful menu, for just the 5 of us, 5 1/2 considering my niece too :)
I got to be head chef this year, and also chose the we spent the morning on 31st buying exotic(read expensive) ingredients, and afternoon onwards to make sure everything including the house, was in order.
As usual, the wine department was with A, while a break from always, I was delegating instead of being the helping hand in the food. So I was extra nervous as to how it would all turn out.
We had a simple menu of greek salad, spinach and cheese pie, and penne arabiata, with the grand finale of a heavily loaded chocolate cake.
The wine was white, Centerra, something A had picked up in Singapore. Wine glasses set, cutlery laid out, and the food, after a few corrections and recorrections to each item's taste(with 3 women tasting it, there's bound to be confusion!), everything rolled out perfect and the wine kept flowing until the last cake crumb. Damn tired after all the cooking, especially Mom and R, but was worth it.
We got our biggest compliment from the smallest member of our family, when she refused to eat her rice, and kept pointing to the pie and pasta. Hmm, she loved did we.. :)

PS: Had a scary thought when the clock struck 12. I just realised I don't remember much of anything worthwhile that I did last year. Maybe an indication of how fast time flies. Some months just merge into one another, and it hits you after a while, that the best part of life was wasted in a blur you don't even remember.