Monthly Archives: June 2010

HORAY!!

What am I so happy about, you may ask?

No, it’s not the Twins’ performance in their 3 game series against the Brewers, or the fact that it’s at least 10 degrees hotter in my apartment than the outside world (and it was 86 on Wednesday…), but what I AM happy about is that I GOT A JOB TODAY!!

What. a. relief.

Seriously, there’s a limited number of days a girl can eat “legume marinara” (i.e. frozen peas, canned garbanzos, with $0.99 store-brand marinara on top. Microwaved.). I’ll be working at Clean Wisconsin, where I was fortunate to intern this semester, which is super awesome. I am so thrilled about it.

Anyway, my environmental musings of late have been more focused on enjoying what we’ve got, instead of  being upset about what we don’t or afraid of we’re about to lose, per my usual. I like the ability to shift focus between these three things and I also really like appreciating all that Wisconsin has as far as untamed, green, beautiful wilderness goes.

I’ve got another trip to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula planned this weekend, hopefully with some hiking and fishing and plenty of beach-walking penned in. Then, off to the office on Monday!

More educational and stimulating posts (and pictures) to come!

Happy summertime,

Jenny

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Eco-Facts Labels: Rapanui Genius

“It’s not that people don’t care, they just don’t know.”

This is what a Rapanui Clothing rep says about “unethical clothing.”

So, how unethical are our clothes?

I was pretty disappointed both with my lack of knowledge and (once again) with our purchasing practices when I looked into it. From water and chemical use, water pollution, fiber choice, bleaching, dyeing, finishing and shipping of our clothing… each step of the process has its own environmental implications and dangers. While this is true of many industries, it is also true that there are other options.

So what are they?

Consignment, to begin, really is a GREAT option. It requires a bit more patience and persistence, but it can REALLY pay off. Not just in the sense that you can find clothes at no additional polluting cost, but it pays off in the sense that these clothes come to you at a FRACTION of the original cost!

Aside from pre-made clothes, imagine a company with 110% transparency. They tell you where, how, and with what resources their products are made. They make environmental puns, educate customers, and are super hip.

These are rare, to be sure. Many have tried, many have gotten stuck somewhere around 75% transparency. It might be all sunshine and rainbows… until you get to the fine print.

Anyway, I don’t do this too often, but I wanted to take the opportunity to recognize Rapanui Clothing company for their excellent environmental stewardship and retail ethics! I wish them the very best of success because well, imagine the potential if everyone announced things like,

This Organic Hoody was made in a wind-powered, Fairwear Foundation audited factory and is printed on 100% Organic Cotton. Embroidered and hand-finished on the Isle of Wight.

Cool, I know. But they don’t stop there:

Specifications

Certified 100% Organic Cotton 3-ply fleece hoody (310g/m2) / Fairwear Foundation Audited / Low Carbon / Hand printed & finished in the UK / Cool wash, Hang dry

Hang dry is right!

Anyway, thanks Rapanui for being such a good role model.

Here’s to being aware,

Jenny

PS: they’re on Twitter!

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Economy, oil spill and applications

I can’t quite remember how many jobs I’ve applied for now, but it’s well into the double digits.

I’ve received automatic HR emails from two, and nothing from the rest (well, except a rejection from one). It’s hard to keep writing about how great I am with such dismal results so far, although I’m surprised to still come across jobs at organizations that are doing wonderful things for Wisconsin’s environment and citizens. I hope one of them lets me help out! And give me benefits…..

What else is going on in my life aside from editing and re-editing my resume and drafting cover letters?

Well.

– On Tuesday I had a can of garbanzo beans with salad dressing for lunch. Delicious.

– I’m also in the beginning stages of training for a half marathon (as promised!). I’m really excited about this free, healthy excuse to be outdoors – daily!

– Yesterday, an enviro-friend and I re-committed ourselves to sticking to this guide for sustainable fish- dining after a guilt-ridden spicy tuna roll. It was delicious, but my enjoyment was tainted by my free-riding, sad, species-endangering conscience. Anyway, here’s the link. use it. (And read more food suggestions here.) In addition to this, I’m also going to try to cut out Styrofoam completely. Here are some facts about why it’s pretty bad for the environment, or you can take my word for it!

Finally, the oil spill has been on my mind a lot. Ugh, it’s just so sad. I don’t want to ruin everyone’s day by discussing it too extensively, although this is a GREAT reflection on that matter, but here is something interesting that Sam found:

As of March 19, 2009, for the first time, Gallup found that Americans were more concerned with the economy than they were with the environment. (Click on the image for the full article)

However, as of May 27, 2010, the Oil Spill seems to have changed this.

Way to look on the bright side in a bad, bad, bad situation! Have a look at this!

This is why we should keep talking about it (here’s an interesting way to do so, thanks to my friends at Clean Wisconsin for the link), ignoring every single thing Sarah Palin ever says, and promoting clean, renewable energy.

But actually, right now!

(ideas: letter to the editor, call your legislator, write Obama!)

Optimistically yours,

Jenny

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Curveball

You may have noticed by now that I didn’t make it through my month of consecutive writing.

I’m disappointed that I didn’t make it, but life has been doing crazy things to me lately, and keeping up with the blog proved to be too tough during this time. Here’s what I’ve been up to:

1. On Sunday, May 16 I graduated from college and moved home.

2. That Wednesday I went to LA for the week to celebrate my sister’s graduation and wedding shower.

3. I returned to Minneapolis on the following Sunday, May 22 and decided to move back to Madison to find a job, try out financial independence, and explore Wisconsin’s beautiful outdoors on the weekends.

4. Last week I looked for jobs and tied some loose ends with school things.

5. Friday, May 28 I went to Ontonagon, MI to explore a teeny-tiny bit of the shores of Lake Superior and Porcupine Mountains.

6. Today (Wednesday, June 2) I sit on my bed in my apartment JOB SEARCHING!

Given recent (and unexpected) changes in my life, I think a new angle for this blog is in order. While I would love my dream of environmental communications to come true, I recognize that this is currently: a. incredibly vague, and b. likely unavailable given my, er…. limited, career history.

So instead, the focus of this space will be to provide insight on how a broke, young, semi-inexperienced environmentalist will attempt to pay the bills and better the environment in the process, whether I work for a directly environmental cause or not.

My current cause: job searching.

Stay tuned!

Jenny

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