Category Archives: Products

Story of stuff expands

The first time I watched Annie Leonard’s “The Story of Stuff” I almost cried with joy. Finally, someone was communicating the most important issues of our time with a clear, simple message which also didn’t bore. The cartoons in The Story of Stuff really do justice to the phrase “a picture paints a thousand words,” without leaving you scratching your head about what the pictures really mean, thanks to Annie’s succinct commentary, complete with excellent analogies that give her arguments a common sense vibe. Best yet, she anticipates a lot of the “but what about x” questions that people are likely to have, and offers practical solutions.

Recently I caught a glimpse of “the story of cosmetics” which was great for people who see cosmetics as a necessity because it didn’t just advocate complete boycotting. The story of cap and trade however is probably the most pertinent to all of us, in the US and NZ, because National has implemented the “free permit” scheme too.  Lastly there’s the story of bottled water, which really does present some alarming figures about how big the problem of bottled water has become, and looks at the wider effects of picking up that pump bottle.

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, economics, Film/Documentary, media, Products

Dustjacket rage

Ok, can someone please explain to me the point of dustjackets for books? I see the problem: dust. I do not see the solution: dustjacket. First of all, books on a shelf get most dusty on the leafy bits. Thus, dustjackets don’t prevent dust buildup on books. Ok, what about a pretty cover, you say? First of all, no sane reader reads with the dustjacket on for long anyway. In fact, I have no freakin idea where any of my dustjackets are. Also, it would make so much more sense for books to just have the cover printed onto the hard cover, and plenty of books have done this (Harry Potter for example)….yet they for some reason also need to provide a dustjacket. Aside from the obvious concern about the unnecessary use of trees for an extra cover that only serves to infuriate, dustjackets actually make hardcover books LESS pretty, because the paper bit gets all ripped or bent when the reader uses their last ounce of sanity to remove the bloody thing.

And that is my rant about dustjackets.

PS. In case you’re wondering why I don’t just buy paperbacks, this rant was inspired by a library book. That and books which aren’t released in paperback. /rant.

1 Comment

Filed under Products

Sugru – hack things better

Ever since my first three pairs of shoes wore out in  exactly the same spot, I’ve been looking for and devising plans for various fixes. I’ve tried those no-slip patches, with very little success. Then I stumbled across sugru. It’s a malleable silicone blue-tack like thing that sets to be like silicone (think muffin trays made of silicone) and can stick to most things too. I don’t know if that’d fix my shoes, but the idea is brilliant. The about page gives you some ideas regarding its use. If you want to you can vote for it in the “Do the Green Thing” “Sustainability Next Top Model” (heheheh….).

UPDATE: The sugru team responded to my question, saying sugru is not strong enough to fix the soles of my shoes, but, if you’re like me, then they suggest “shoe goo.” I’ll be playing with a little soon as it turns out my friend has some. Will let you know how it goes 😀

Leave a comment

Filed under Products