Go green! Reduce, reuse, recycle! Be kind to Mother Earth. Protect our planet. The taglines promoting ecologically correct behaviors are as vast as our earnest plans to follow them.
We want to do what’s right, even if it takes a little more effort, so we bring our cloth tote bags to the grocery store and put our cardboard, metal and plastic into the recycling bin each week. We are doing our part.
Despite well-intentioned efforts to be green, we’ve become a throwaway society. I think many of us could learn a lesson or two from our parents and grandparents, who practiced green behaviors more out of necessity than political correctness.
Let’s start with the basics: water. You don’t have to be a tree hugger to understand water conservation is important for a healthy planet. So, the mindful among us take shorter showers and wash our SUVs twice a month instead of weekly. In comparison, our grandparents shared bathwater, recycled the same tub of water for four loads of laundry and drank tap water from a glass because the bottled variety hadn’t been invented yet.
Times have changed, but our need to be thoughtful about how we use our resources has not. With this in mind, I’ve put together a little quiz to assess our collective practicality and greenness regarding items – like buttons and screws – critical to our planet’s future. Be forewarned the test is highly unscientific, tongue-in-cheek and without any statistical backing.
#1. Those darn socks
Ever heard of darning socks? It’s what people used to do when they got a hole in their sock. Not many of us patch up old socks anymore. When I do the laundry and find a sock with a hole, I move the sock to my old sock cabinet where it will be used as a cleaning cloth on a mirror or sink. Pick the answer below that best describes you.