Thursday, July 3, 2008

Recycling and Composting in a 'Not-So-Green' City

Living in the Chicago burbs for 18 years and having hippie parents, I grew up thinking that recycling and composting was a normal way of life. When I went to college at IU Bloomington at the ripe "naive" age of 18, I discovered that not everyone recycles...can you believe that???

So after approximately 10 years of apartment (recycling-free) living, I finally bought my own house in Indianapolis just 5 months ago. FINALLY I got to purchase a recycling plan and receive my glorious orange recycling bin. I even got my very own "Welcome to Recycling" instructions... only to discover that my options are limited. "No cardboard." "No plastics with numbers 4 and on." "No paper." ARRGGGG!!!

At least my carbon-footprint wont be as nasty as it was just a few short months ago. I'm glad Indy got with the times, but seriously... is this 1985? Okay, rant over with. At least now I do have my own house, which enabled me to instantly buy a compost bin, which is now on its sweet way to making organically gorgeous black soil. (Ahhhh organic, salmonella-free tomatoes!! :)). I do have to say that I'm a little scared of the very "human-like" turd that is quietly resting in front of my compost bin right now. I'm not sure if my bin o' compost has pissed off my neighbors or what. Hmmm!

I'm doing my best in this 'not-so-green' city. I do use only 'green' cleaning products. (I may quite possibly be the biggest germ-a-phobe on this planet). One battle at a time right? Once school starts up again, I plan on encouraging my students to recycle their 'straight-A' papers. Yes, I said 'straight-A.' My students are perfect (that's what I like to tell myself as I cry myself to sleep at night). Luckily, we do have paper recycling at the school, and the kids are actually in to it. WOO HOO!!

Cheers to all of us recyclers/composters. Maybe one of these days the great city of Indianapolis will offer cardboard recycling and I can feel a little better about the world.

Over and out...
-Morgan :)

1 comment:

Melissa @ Mountains of the Moon said...

You go Morgan!

Considering that humans only recycle 5% of the plastic we produce, every little bit counts. Here in Chicago (a city named the third greenest city in the U.S.), we have a pretty sucky recycling program. The 'burbs have the city beat by far. That's why we have to keep writing letters and (semi-nicely) harassing the higher-ups to get off their asses and get with the times.

An FYI for those of you who don't recycle because your city doesn't have a program, there are recycling centers EVERYWHERE (not only big recycling centers, but also recycle "dumpsters" in the parking lots of major grocery stores, etc.), so no excuses, kids. Here's a little guilt trip for you - The next time you throw an empty beer bottle or plastic container in the trash, think about the fact that wildlife sometimes mistakes trash for food. Then envision Bambi choking on your yogurt container. Bet that makes you rethink throwing away perfectly recycable items, hmmmmmmmmm?