06/20/07 02:56 - 71ºF - ID#39741
I'm of two minds on this issue (yeah, I always have this problem, there are too many shades of grey in this world). On the one hand, the plastic bags are often strong and can provide multiple uses before having to be discarded, and are usable for trash bags, etc. When I go to Wegman's and am asked whether plastic is OK, I almost inevitably assent. The fact is, I'm used to using them and don't have a good substitute for them in terms of household re-use.
On the other hand, as the article notes, the environmental consequences of ubiquitous plastic-bag use are substantial and discouraging. Sea animals choke on them, ingest them and have potentially fatal reactions to the plastic in their system, the bags typically are not easily degradable and will clog landfills for generations, etc. And to boot, they are petroleum-based, so they only prolong and worsen our dependence on oil.
One thing is for sure -- I don't think government action is the key to a positive change. Apparently in Ireland they imposed a tax on the bags, and use of them has plummeted. Effective, perhaps, but I don't think the US and especially WNY needs yet another tax. Rather, it would be spendid if folks would just start using more permanent canvas totes or nylon backpacks to carry their groceries. Unfortunately, I'm skeptical about thie prospects of this. I know that there is a dedicated minority out there who already use permanent bags, and that almost certainly includes some enlightened (e:strip)pers. But I just doubt that the majority of folks want to lay out even a little cash to buy those non-disposable Wegman's mesh bags, the Co-op canvas totes, or other stores' equivalents. (Is Tops offering a more permanent alternative as well? Haven't been in a while.) And I think that folks (myself included) who do try to use a permanent bag will lapse and forget and probably laze their way back into using the ultra-convenient plastic ones.
Apart from resolving to do a better job of avoiding plastic bags myself, is there something I should be doing to reduce the negative impact of these little buggers?
Perhaps I should buy the women in my life this product?
06/18/07 10:43 - 71ºF - ID#39716
being injured sucks
Naturally , just when I was starting to feel good about distance running, I get a repetitive stress injury. So, running 15-18 miles per week was great for cardiovascular health, physical endurance, weight control, and my mental health, but now it seems it has also sowed the seeds of its own demise. That is, the primary treatment for patellar tendinits ("jumper's knee" -- sort of like tennis elbow only in the kneecap area) is rest -- so I have to avoid the running that brought on the annoying affliction in the first place. This is KILLING me because the good weather makes me want to go tool around Delaware Park, but I can't, because I'll aggravate the knee and worsen/prolong the injury. I'd love to run in a 5k or 10k race, but that's a bad idea for at least a few weeks. (aaarggh!) And, interestingly enough, this type of injury is resistant to typical anti-inflammatories, so drugs won't help all that much. Yay! I so love being injured.
I know this is really no big deal in the grand scheme of things, but I needed to vent. :-P
On the bright side, I'm going to see Social Distortion at Town Ballroom in July. :-)
04/24/07 12:48 - 51ºF - ID#39024
Deathtroika this week
1. Boris Yeltsin, former president of Russia
2. David Halberstam, Vietnam-era journalist and author
04/12/07 07:59 - 36ºF - ID#38869
04/08/07 09:38 - 29ºF - ID#38809
oh, it's ON, baby
All the more sweet because it sends Darcy Tucker, Mats Sundin, and the other Leafs packing. hehe
OK, so who's got first-round playoff tickets? :-D
04/07/07 05:18 - 27ºF - ID#38788
the third sure thing in life...
Oddly enough, I received tax forms from Pennsylvania (I worked there in 2005, but not in 2006)... but not from New York (hello?!) and not from New Jersey (wtf?). Go figure.
So I've been printing tax forms for the last hour or so. It's almost as exciting as watching paint dry. Somebody kill me.
I could deduct some moving expenses but that would (I believe) mean itemizing my deductions, which I have never done before (no kids, no home ownership, no investments, etc.) and do not particularly feel like doing for the first time this weekend or next.
It is ironic that I hound my students about not procrastinating when it comes to papers and studying for exams, and here I am filing my taxes during the last 10 days before the deadline. I made my bed, now I gotta sleep in it.
03/29/07 09:54 - 41ºF - ID#38689
Bass Pro is coming after all...
It took $25 million in public funds to lure (har-de-har-har) Bass Pro to sign on the dotted line (ouch!) but I guess you have to give to get. I'm sure it will be all over the news on TV tonight and in the papers tomorrow.
My question: what sorts of tax breaks and other behind-the-scenes incentives were dangled in front of Bass Pro to get them to commit?
03/29/07 08:36 - 43ºF - ID#38687
Office Marathon -- in progress
03/27/07 08:45 - 61ºF - ID#38657
West Side good eats
I was alll set to order lentils and macaroni but then the waitress started describing the specials and I knew the lentils would have to wait. Beans-n'-greens just sounded way too good. My friend got the sausage giambotta (jyum-BOTT), which looked really good. The waitress warned me that the beans-n'greens typically came with some shells -- no problem there. She served it up steaming hot, in a huge bowl (even I couldn't finish it) along with fresh Italian bread. She mentioned that the hamhocks had stewed in the broth for a day (days?) and the smoky goodness in the bowl said she was no liar. The mix of pasta, beans (black-eyed peas and one or two white bean types), greens (escarole?) and slightly garlicky, smoky broth was sooooooo good.
The two entrees plus a Bud bottle for each of us came to $17. If you're in the mood for old-school Itai-American, try the Armory Restaurant for lunch (it's lunch-only I think) and tell me what you think.
For that matter, tell me your favorite low-rent traditional Itai-American joint. I really like Caffe Garangelo on Hertel, but the Armory's beans-n'-greens is giving me a second thought. What do you think??
03/23/07 04:30 - 53ºF - ID#38594
Roswell/BGH Truck Fire
Smoke from truck fire; with a little imagination, the scene almost resembles a small-scale terror attack (car bomb or something)
The remains of the truck (Kelley Blue Book value = $0.00)
Photos courtesy of a coworker of (e:chicoschica), please do not reproduce
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