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My Blog

Worldly Word 10

Good evening to all.  I know today is a much later blog.  Long day.  Had my dance class, so much running around to do, and finally a moment to reflect. 
I had something happen at a restaurant that made me decide on today's word.  I was at the register to pay my bill and was surprised to see that their pen holder was a small green plastic garbage can.  Just like the one I roll out to the curb on trash day.  I commented on how unusual it was to have a garbage can at the register of a restaurant and was corrected by the cashier that it was a recycling container.  So sorry....looked like a garbage can to me.  Needless to say, today's word is RECYCLE. 
Do the new generation really think they are doing something new here?  As I reflect back on my youth...we called it the normal life style.  We called it, "not being wasteful"  We called it reusing...not repurposing.  Do they really think that because they came up with a new word that it is something they should get a medal for? 
When I was young, we had our milk delivered to the house in Glass Bottles with paper tops on it.  We had Linco delivered (although, I found out recently that this is strictly a Chicago thing)  Our Linco man's name was Red and when he would walk down the gangway, he would yell "Linco Man!"  When we had a whole in our socks...we mended them.  When we had something go wrong with one of our 2 pairs of shoes...they went to the shoemaker to be fixed.  When we wore out a hole in our clothes, they got patches put on them.  Hardly anything got thrown away.  It got passed down.  We bought furniture one piece at a time.  When we saved up the coins...there weren't any credit cards.  We made a lot of soup and home made bread and spread the meal...company coming...add a little more water to the pot...not " Oh, let's just order take out"  There was no takeout then!! 
There was one of something int he house if you were lucky enough to have that.  One TV, No air conditioning.  I remember some pretty hot nights in the summer growing up.  The houses were so close together that you didn't get any breezes in the window...so on those unbearable nights, we took blankets and pillows and slept on the front porch...and believe it or not we weren't afraid!  We used pots and pans with lids...so there was no foil or cling wraps that would land up in the landfill.  We used cloth diapers and washed them and hung then out to dry right along with the other clothes.  Everyone in the neighborhood could tell what was going on in your house just by what hung on the clothesline.  And we did that even in the winter...and no, our wet clothes didn't freeze because there would be vinegar in it.  We even make root beer.  My grandmother would make it reusing the bottles and corking it and putting them under the bed to ferment.  I remember one year hearing what we thought was gun shots...it was just too hot and the corks started to pop....oh the mess...but what laughter and the stories told on the front porches across the railings that night.  It was even brought to my mind, that I grew up with onl one space heater in the house. That was the heat.  No radiators, no forced gas air, just the heater in the kitchen which was the main room in which we lived in.  At night, in the winter, my Grandmother had a number of hot water bottles that she would use between the sheets and the blankets to warm up the bed.  When I was ready to get in, she would have a brand new hot one ready, she would remove the ones already there (which warmed up the bed) and then as I got in put the new one at my feet and covered me up tight.  I was toasty warm until I got up the next morning and ran to the space heater to get rewarmed. 
Soda if we were lucky enough to have came in glass bottles that we took back and got money back.  Sometimes as kids we would go around town and pick up ones we found laying around.  We even traded in our comic books so that we could get new ones.  Recycling isn't a new thing.  No new invention...just people that think they have.  Maybe today's world should renew, reuse the old ways a bit.  How many homes have more that one tv? one car? one computer? one microwave?  They say that 2 people have to work today in a family to make ends meet.  I wonder?  Maybe the word we all need to have in our vocabulary is REthink.  It seems that all that is made today NEEDS to be recycled.  Maybe it should be the individuals.   We have become a throw away generation.  I hope that we begin to learn to recycle old ways and habits. 
Todays quote is:
"Most of us are familiar with recycle and reusing, but how often do we think of the third R - REDUCE? 'Reduce' is probably the most important of the three Rs because, if we reduced, it would limit the need to recycle and reuse."
Catherine Pulsifer


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