Saturday, June 21, 2008

Stuffed shirt: Another guide for shopping

Seeing as i am in NYC which, according to popular legend, is addicted to shopping - I'm gonna spell out my own guide. Candace Bushnell I ain't - I've got something more on my mind.

I am talking a sort of enviro-consumption or eco-consumption or whatever you might like to call it (never fear still involves the "consuming").

My guide has three basic tenets. The first and third you've heard so many times I might just make you yawn... (sorry to the apex staff who I am sure are the only souls reading this in any case).

1). LESS IS MORE
Believe me clothes and shoes can easily last for 10 years at a stretch: 15 years if they are only worn seasonally. (I admit I get bored with myself still having stuff that I wore at university but...)
So spend a little more for quality and then treat it better (see below) - so your overall consumer footprint is smaller.
The minute you get home change into "sloppies". Only where "sloppies" in the immediate vicinity of your house - for me in life that means sabout 4 blocks in any direction from my house (you get used to the strange looks). And if you go to the office on the weekend - only where the same badass, stained, holey, torn, faded, misshappen stuff (it's comfortable by the way).

2). ONLY BY GOODS PRODUCED IN THE REGION/ECONOMIC ZONE IN WHICH YOU LIVE
This might also cost a little more - but it is the only way of reducing carbon footprints and encouraging local economies and historically important artisanal crafts/indutries.

ie. When in the United States only buy/drink wine from the United States
Remember there is wine produced in Oregon and Washington State as well as the Nappa Valley: that have more idiomatic and perhaps European flavors.

I can recommend: "Independent Producers: sunset road vinters" Destiny Ridge 2006 Merlot (Columbia Valley, Washington State) 11.99 Union Square Wines

Only buy clothes produced in the NAFTA zone.

I tried to do this yesterday, however, (when walking back downtown from midtown) Gap, Banana Republic, Guess, Kenneth cole - and I couldn't find a single plain black shirt made in the NAFTA zone!! Something gone wrong there.

Now in Europe this is easier to do - but also more important - because there is still a chance to buttress European industries from the Asian encroachment - but in America I am going to damned well try.

I'm not interested in the US balance of trade (it's been screwed for too long to remember) but this could've been a means a decade ago to keep a more even keel.

3. SAY NO TO PACKAGING
Self-explanatory this one. Carry a spare shopping bag... and don't buy stuff that's excessively wrapped in plastic.

Now if only Ms. Bushnell had written a few themes like this into her tales-of-the-city...

2 comments:

apexart resident said...

Dr. Vino said...

Hey In Residence!

Glad you are thinking about how your life as a consumer affects the larger world.

In re: wine, I've done some research to show that, contrary to conventional wisdom, wine from far away can actually have a lower carbon footprint depending on how it's shipped. Check out our green line for wine.

Cheers,
June 21, 2008 5:13 PM

Simon Rees said...

Hi Dr. Vino, glad to have someone scanning the web. I guess that 'drinking local' also helps with tasting the local culture. No place better than Italy and getting bottles filled at your local Bottega. i live in northern, post-soviet, Europe - and really wonder at the proclivities involved in drinking New world wine that has hauled across the globe compared with Italian and Spansish. As a poor country with no wine culture, however, the Australian/Chilean/S African stuff we have access to actually beats the Euro imports hands down I am always conflicted.
June 23, 2008 10:58 AM

EV said...

hi Simon, it's not only the apex staff that reads this!
cheers, ev