Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Six Extreme Greenie Water Conservation Tips For The Dazed and Bemused!
by Elizah Leigh
Oh, you may think you're soooo green with your french-fry oil rigged Volvo and your subscription to Mother Earth News, but what if the shiznizzle really hit the fan and you were forced to cut back (or completely outsource) the free flowing H20 that you know (and love) so well?
This is no time to roll your eyes - I know that we're all blessed to live in sophisticated, highly modernized societies - but things...happen.
Say for example that your household was on a well system and - completely out of the blue with no forewarning whatsoever - that well ran dry like it did for me just 5.247 crystal-clear years ago. I kid you not.
As a Colorado mountain resident, I was always well aware of the persistent drought issues gripping my region but I naively presumed that my magical source of well water would continue to runneth over...until the stuff flowing from the tap in my kitchen sink began sporadically coughing, gagging and moaning before finally vaporizing into thin air.
I recall eeking out loud, immediately entering a state of panic and running throughout the house, fumbling with every conceivable faucet and shower head in my wake. Good God, there was no relief in sight!! That's when reality hit me like a ton of bricks - there was no way on Earth that I'd be able to do the laundry.
That laughable worst case scenario paled in comparison to what would end up being a six day, uber grungy, water-free reality - one of the darkest periods in my young adult life. So sad but so true - I was ill-equipped to handle the trials and tribulations that accompanied a liquid free existance. I instantly recognized that showering was my most treasured memory, one that I would regard almost as highly as chugging my minimum eight glasses a day.
Of course, one of the positive things to come out of my silly little hardship was an adrenaline-enhanced ability to sniff out all sources of liquid within a 25 mile radius without ever having to leave the house. Perhaps you will be inspired enough by my tap-free plight to incorporate a few of the following do or die lessons into your own water conservation plan.
DRAIN CANNED GOODS Mmmmm, drinky-winky! When you're desperate enough, the salt-laden liquid that massages peas and string beans within their 15 ounce aluminum womb tastes divine and conveniently provides you with about 5 of your 64 ounce daily water requirements! This is also a very good time to go on a soup diet -- the more cans of dump and eat soup that you have on hand, the better.
SUCK ON ICE CUBES Trust me, there's nothing sexy about the adrenaline stench of a future devoid of water. If you're ever in the same situation, you'll be in survival mode and be unbelievably thankful that your significant other didn't thoughtlessly waste them on last month's romantic interlude. (How sad is that?)
HOARD FRESH FRUIT & VEGGIES Crispy, crunchy and blissfully full of water, the top contenders to have on hand are cucumbers, celery, iceberg lettuce, watermelon, and well, pretty much any type of produce is good to lean on in a water-deprived pinch. If you've got 'em, just eat 'em. Better yet, steam the veggies in your microwave and lap up the condensation on the plate!
BRUSH TEETH WITH STRAIGHT UP PASTE Who created the rule that you need to run the tap full force (or even just a wee bit) in order to clean your teeth effectively? That's what spit is for. Just apply your toothpaste directly onto your brush, insert it into your mouth and scrub-a-dub away -- your natural salivation will take care of the rest. When you're ready to rinse, just add a swig of mouthwash into the mix and completely torch any remnants of your odoriferous cotton mouth in one fell swoop.
PRE-MOISTENED CLOTHS ARE A GRUNGE MEISTER'S BESTEST FRIEND Harboring flushable wipes within the vicinity of a confirmed greenie's abode is admittedly eco-sacrilegious, but these revoltingly tangible scraps of dead tree can become one's sole reason to continue persevering. They are, in a word, swell. If you are a particularly clever apocalyptic greenie, anticipate eventual disaster by pre-soaking your own ratty organic cotton t-shirt scraps in a mild baking soda/white vinegar/water solution and storing them for future use in screw top large glass jars.
BECOME A CRISIS LUSH For years, I had oddball bottles of candy sweet $4.99 port, funky gin, nosehair-torching tequila and lollipop flavored schnapps cluttering my counter space. Those dinner party donated duds would have wasted away in perpetuity were it not for my burning desire to rehydrate my tongue and major organs. Since my body was already operating at a major H20 deficit, what might have been six long miserable water-free days ended up morphing into a blackout of spectacular proportions. And you know what? I was too inebriated to even realize just how dry I was.
Do you think that you could rise to the challenge of voluntarily swearing off free flowing sources of water for just one day? Would you do it to prove to yourself just how green you really can be? Would you ever seriously consider using any of the strategies above? Can you think of any inventive new water conservation ideas that we'd all oooooh and aaaaah over?
Elizah Leigh writes for Greenwala where this article originally appeared. The article is published here with permission of the author.