TRASH IS TRAGIC
I decided to stop making trash in 2013. Striving for "zero waste", my partner and I contribute almost nothing to landfills, and very little to recycling plants. That means no plastic bottles, no paper towels, no nothin' designed for single use. We re-use or compost most of our discards. The goal is to break free from wasteful habits and end our consumption of plastics. The outcomes include simplicity, health, organization, creativity, more money, less stink-ass trash.
Trash is Tragic offers practical tips for making less garbage, and critiques of waste practices in the US. It appears online in the Boston Hassle, and as a short monthly column in a printed underground newspaper, the Boston Compass.
Know Your Garbage: the WTF World of Bioplastics, April 2019
How to Fux With Climate Change by Reducing Food Waste, November 2018
How to Kick Plastic Waste in the Dick, June 2018
Zero Waste Kitchen, May 2018
Zero Waste Grocery Shoppin', April 2018
Trash is Tragic column in the Boston Compass
It’s June 11, and I’m sitting outside the Westin Copley. My menses are... mensing, but I won’t move away from the door, so I slide a handkerchief into my jeans to manage overflow. Classy! A wall of cops are cowboying towards me and ten other seated accomplices. Soon I’m in the back of a wagon wearing zip-tie handcuffs, the rag, and a pair of sunglasses.
No, this is not the plot of Coyote Ugly III: Felony Melanie and the Case of the Missing Jello Shots. This is my Tuesday, brought to you by a series of adult choices. So how did I end up getting hauled into a police wagon before a crowd of cheering activists? In period pants? I was peacefully protesting a gas conference. I was peacefully protesting the end of our world.
Inside Westin, the Real Gas Execs of Climate-Denial County were talkin’ fossil fuel infrastructure - more pipelines in MA, anyone? Meanwhile, scientists continue to warn: if we don’t net zero our emissions in 11 years, the runaway effects of climate change will be unmanageable. They predict ecosystem collapse, societal collapse, and human extinction. No, not in 100,000 years. In 100 years.
This is not a normal day at the gas conference. This is a fucking emergency.
Zero waste is an important part of my life. It’s not just about eschewing pornographic amounts of senseless waste; it’s about looking at our world and saying, “We can’t treat this place like a giant fucking toilet. My personal gratification is not worth the cost of emissions.” Objectively, this choice matters - 2018’s IPCC report states that individual actions help combat climate change. But ZW alone can not “solve” it. And industry’s biggest polluters are thrilled at the idea of “individual responsibility,” because it places the blame elsewhere. Classic!
Make no mistake: pollution is a structural problem. We must stop it at the source. We need industry to respond to the threat. We need our government to stop suppressing science that contradicts their “official position on climate change.” We need our media to report on the urgency of this crisis. We need to act like the house is on fire. Because it is.
Local Climate Activist Groups - New Members Wanted!
Extinction Rebellion Massachusetts
Sunrise Movement Boston
All you need to do is show up. Fucking do it!