How do you know what’s the most environmentally friendly way to wash dishes? You ask one of those nifty books that advise you of the “greenest” options for all the ordinary elements of quotidian life.
These books invariably (in my experience to date) recommend using a dishwasher instead of hand washing, as it uses less water. Which seemed odd to me – right up until I read the dishwashing section of How To Save Your Planet One Object At A Time by Dr Tara Shine.
I recently discovered a fabulous way of reducing the pile of things forming archaeological layers – or possibly new civilizations – in the mending basket. Bin? Absolutely not. Forced labour? Also no. The trick, it turns out, is to shift the goal posts.
For a ridiculously long time, I have had a flannel nightie in my mending basket, waiting for a mend. Button-bereft garments come and go, elastic waistbands stretch and are replaced, tears are darned or patched, but this was beyond me. The worn-through yoke needed replacing. Did I know how to replace a yoke? No. So I left the nightie in the basket until such time as enlightenment descended.
“What, already?!” I hear you ask, a note of panic in your voice. Today marks two months until Christmas, which means that Christmassy stuff is already showing up in advertizing, and it is probably only a matter of time before they start playing Christmas (or should that be Xmas?) music in the shops.
In fact, I have heard that in the Philippines they have been playing Christmas music for at least a month now. But before we rush to judge, let us remember that they are living under a Marcos/Duterte government, and therefore are in need of all the jollity they can muster.
It has to be said, though, that generally speaking, Christmas shopping music is not an evoker of jollity. Particularly for those poor souls working in retail who spend their days hearing the same Xmassy album or two over and over and over again – something which should probably be covered by the Geneva Convention.
Which leads one to wonder: how much of the usual stuff done at this time of the year is actually being enjoyed by those who do it?