Sunday, February 27, 2005

Sorry I've been obsessing so over that damn mouse. The traps remain untouched, so either he's crafty one or he's gone to better pastures. Might have made a cute little Tex Avery cartoon with the little guy (and his friends) dancing to some ragtime jig all over my mini sieves or bouncing off my egg separator and flinging stone pie weights from my measuring spoons.

Last night we watched the Motorcycle Diaries. What a wonderful film. How I emphasized with Che and his asthma. It has been ages since I myself have had an attack, and I do believe that living in a well maintained (aside from the mouse problem) mold free environment has contributed to my improved state of health. I cringed as we watched the main character in the film stumble and gasp for breath. Last year I had a similar episode in the rental I was living in. The only place I felt truly safe from the effect of the airborn pests were on the front porch where I usually would have a very public episode gasping and reeling from my inability to breathe. The scraping gasps of an asthmatic usually frighten or horrify most people, but when you're so desparate for an ounce of air, you really don't care how people react to you. Your focus is tunneled only on the task of breathing successfully. I read somewhere that due to the amount of pollution we've generated, the cases of asthma increase each year.

Guevera was in the end convinced that hate was the empowering emotion that would drive the masses to take over. I think that this is rather shortsighted as hate usually breeds hate and we end up riding the swinging pendulum all over again. As a child influenced by conservatism, I am suspicious of any sort of revolutionary stirrings which incite violence.

I've been thinking thoughts, pinko thoughts again about how we have to be responsible about what we buy and from whom we buy it. I remember balking in irritation at my college roommate who used to chide me for eating cans of tuna and preached that veganism was the only way to salvation of the conscience in this fucked up post modern world. I remember how irritating her soapbox pleas were and how she once drove me to the point where I clandestinely fried a porkchop in her pan. True confession of a sneaky passive agressive. Yes, it was wrong, but it felt good at the time.

I don't think that preaching is a very good way of getting your point across. Never have thought it to be a good method of convincing people, but then again I've had an almost life-long distrust of missionaries of any sort. Why is it that I find most people who push their agenda regardless of whether it is green or religious highly annoying despite the fact that I may agree strongly with some of the things they say. I agreeed with my former room-mate that there was a definite shadiness surrounding the fact that the American Beef Industry is one of the biggest funders of the American Heart Association, and I agree with most Christians that the main tenet of Christ's teachings (something about caring for those who are less fortunate) is an important part of social responsibility. With this in mind, I made a solemn resolution not avoid shopping in places that are highly corporate or owned by corporations that do not support middle class and smaller businesses. I decided that I could buy items (but less of them) from local shops or businesses rather than opting for going to the One-stop "Meglo-mart." Then the thought occurred to me... maybe it's too late. Maybe the Meglo stores and corporations have won. Not to long after I entertained this thought I saw on the news that the largest retailer just bought our beloved Meier and Frank and that the department store's name would now be replaced with Bloomingdales. I think for most of us it would be very difficult to really avoid all products of "the establishment." You simply just need to do what you have to do. Yes, Smallhead-mart employs countless people, but are they ALL better off now that they work there? Can you really trust companies that advertise their 'humanitarian' side because they give certain employees insurance to get kidney transplants for their ill children. Shouldn't they be doing this anyway?

This is my choice. Whether or not it has a larger impact on society and politics, who knows, but I'm just doing what I can. Years ago, I used to shun the idea of boycotting products which come from the Machine and THE MAN. I used to think, stupid hippies who smell of cheap Myrrh and patchouli. You think you can make the world better with your quinoa and tempeh casseroles. You will weave a world of loving hemp, but your efforts are futile in a world run by the Machine. So now why have I had such a change of heart about responsible consumerism? Maybe the argument was there all along, and I chose not to listen to the messengers because I could not connect with them. This is important to note in a world where we feeling increasingly disconnected. Those who can influence and bring connections to people emotionally, mentally, ideologicially will control or at least push the Machine in their direction.

Little we know, but we can be "The Invisible Hand" if we choose to be. But the corporations will probably just find a way to masque who they are and what they're selling. The already do it today whether it's the environmentally friendly washproducts you can get at Targ or the healthy Mexican restaurants put out by McMonsters.

Living responsibly by consuming discriminately? Do I think it will actually work. Maybe I'm just riding the wave of popular reform. Obviously, there's a market for conscientious consumerism out there.

By the way, I don't think I could ever bring myself to make a composting toilet or water my plants with my pee... sorry. Just uptight about these kind of things.


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