Human testing

So, my husband is my guinea pig. He’s normal in that he doesn’t mind doing what’s eco-friendly as long as it’s not too much of a pain. Composting isn’t too bad because it’s just throwing food away in a different place. Recycling is the same way. Turning off lights and using sunlight wherever possible is ok, too. He still uses the dryer when he does laundry though.

Today he put weed killer on the front lawn. He bought grass seed and fertilizer as well. He wants a nice lawn, it’d make him happy. Ok. I can understand that. But there has to be another way. One of the things I want to work on is getting the information out there. There are ways to have a nice lawn organically, I just don’t know how off the top of my head. Every house-proud suburban dad wants a nice lawn though, and we need to teach him how to get it sustainably. The information is out there but it’s not as easy to get as the adverts for the latest chemical.

So, there’s my challenge. If I can convince my husband that it’s reasonable and not too much more work, I can convince him to do things sustainably. The problem is that most sustainable practices are more time consuming. Huh.

Another drawback is that he doesn’t feel like our little efforts are making any difference when corporations, “who are the ones really causing all the pollution,” are able to trade carbon credits or move their operations to wherever there are fewer regulations and keep polluting as much as they want. Here is where I think the corporation as reactive rather than proactive is important. We, as consumers, need to hit them where it hurts before any changes will be made. My little efforts don’t mean much, but if enough of us do it, the corporations will start to lose money to companies that promote and use sustainable practices. That’s what drives change in the corporate world – it’s all about market share.

So, someone has to be willing to do a little more work. In our home, I’m the more committed one, so I’m the one who grates soap for laundry detergent, and hangs the clothes. He’s been a trooper and adapted easily to my less invasive ideas. He’s willing to find out what the organic lawn might entail, but he’s not averse to having a company come every week to treat the lawn to keep it weed free and green. Ugh. So, off to the cooperative extension I go to find out more about having a lawn without chemicals.

Like I said, he’s my guinea pig. If I can get him to care, I have hit on a good, common sense argument. Challenge accepted.

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