Thursday, October 15, 2009

Blog Action Day 2009-Climate Change


I heard about this and knew that I had to participate. What is Blog Action Day?

"Blog Action Day is an annual event held every October 15 that unites the world’s bloggers in posting about the same issue on the same day with the aim of sparking discussion around an issue of global importance. Blog Action Day 2009 will be one of the largest-ever social change events on the web."

Thank you all for reading and I hope you enjoy today's post!



Last week, I attended my very first KISS concert. As a kid, I was not a KISS fan, though I knew many boys who were. On Halloween night, you were guaranteed to see at least a dozen Gene Simmons demons, several Paul Stanley star childs, and one or two Ace Frehley space-aces. Never a Peter Criss cat man.

However, I was familiar with "Beth," "Shout It Out Loud" and a few others, and I admit, their over-the-top, theatrical stage show has always fascinated me. John saw them ten years ago and had been hyping them every since. So when they came to the Garden for their Alive 35 tour, curiosity got the best of me and I decided to see the spectacle.

A spectacle it was. But what is the old saying? Curiosity killed the cat man?

The show started off great. Classic songs, big explosions, cool effects -- breathing fire and spitting blood, band members flying through the air. Doing the most talking was Paul Stanley, who, in addition to being the rhythm guitar player and main vocalist, is also the band’s MC. He pumps up the crowd and introduces the songs. However, his intros became long, drawn-out speeches.

Despite the length of the speeches, I was actually touched by his rhetoric throughout the show. At one point he told how KISS used to rehearse at 23rd and 5th (10 blocks from the Garden), and how as a cab driver, he once drove people to see Elvis Presley. He told himself that one day, he, too, would play the Garden.

But my soft spot for him quickly hardened about ¾ of the way into the show, when he made yet another speech: "There are a lot of troubles in the world. But if you came to hear about troubles, you came to the wrong fuckin' place." So far, so good. Didn't need to curse, but I got the idea.

Then he dropped the big one. "All we hear about is Save the Nukes, Save the Whales, Save the Porpoises. You don't want to hear about that! You want to escape!"

Cannons placed all over the arena blasted tons of confetti everywhere. All to the tune of “Rock and Roll All Nite.” And then, as if the paper wasn't bad enough, the people in back of me started chanting, “Fuck the porpoises!"

It was more like a rock and roll all nitemare. They weren’t driving me wild, but they were driving me crazy. Paper? The poor trees. Fuck the porpoises? What did they do? And what exactly did "Save the Nukes" mean?

I understood what Paul Stanley was trying to say but using the environment as his examples was too much.

I seriously think we need to ban the confetti thing. Did anyone stop to think how many trees were chopped down to produce even one machine full of confetti? Probably not. Paul McCartney used it in his concert as well. PAUL! Maybe it's a "Paul" thing?

To that I ask the questions: Why do we, the audience, get excited about little bits of paper falling all over us? Do you take it home as a souvenir?

Ironically, Paul Stanley’s statement about “escape” helped me do anything but. All I could think about for the rest of the show was waste, whales and porpoises.

At this point, I couldn't get back on board with the concert which bummed me out because it was the encore and those were all the songs I knew. I would've loved to rock n roll all night but my mind was off in Detroit Rock City being pissed off over the whole porpoise/nuke/paper fiasco.

I guess I wasn't made for loving you, KISS.

Monday, October 12, 2009

You're Never Too Old To Have A Green Childhod

I was recently in a meeting where a new recycling program was about to be unveiled. As excitement stirred among my peers, our group leader admitted she was not that interested in recycling. "All I care about is how it will save us money," she said. "Going green is for the young people."

She explained that she was too old to change her ways, because she was (gasp!)53.

For real? I was completely bummed. This woman has young children. Was she that unwilling to set an example for them, let alone help make the earth a better place to live?

And then I started worrying. Was I going to turn out like her when I turned 53? Would I stop caring and just dump everything on the young 'uns?

That couldn't be true. I was already in my 30's when I decided to go green. When Al Gore started the work that led to An Inconvenient Truth, he was 56 -- three years older than my ancient group leader.

What was the problem? Was she too old to throw a bottle into a blue bin instead of a black one? Why did she use her age as an excuse for not caring about the planet? The earth is older than she is (at least I think it is).

My husband told me that in the town where he grew up, every year there was a huge number of senior citizens who tried to vote the school budget down. As long as they got to their early bird specials, they didn't care if the next generation got an education. They thought it was someone else's problem.

I admit, I've gone down that road. How many times have I gone to get a drink at the water cooler only to find the jug is empty? I've thought, "I'll just leave it . . . someone else will change it." But then when no one does, I realize that water is important, I need it, others need it, and if I want it, I have to be the one to make the change.

My guess is that that my elderly leader has never changed a water jug.

But who am I to judge? If she has early bird specials to get to at the age of 53, it's not my place to prevent her from getting behind the wheel of her Winnebago and driving five miles an hour to get there.

However, I am determined not to end up like her. My responsibility as a human being doesn't end because I turn a certain age. Or any age.

Recycling is renewal, and nothing makes you feel younger than making something old, new again. In this case the planet.

Besides, being over 50 does not mean you have to be over the environment. Laurie David, Paul McCartney, Ralph Nader and Pete Seeger all prove . . . going green is for the old people!

Saturday, October 3, 2009


Pedicures are one of my favorite things. I love to sit in the big chair with the rolling massage balls on my back, while my feet are massaged and my toes are painted in fun, seasonal shades.

Recently, I found a new salon near my apartment that I thought I'd give a try. I was greeted by many women who simultaneously pointed to a chair, took my bags and asked me to pick a color. As you may have guessed, I brought my own "green" polish, free of formaldehyde.

But even with my own, safe polish in hand, I didn't realize how un-green my pedi was going to be.

I sat down in the comfy chair and turned on the massagers. I let them talk me into the special "spa" treatment. I had had a rough day. I was going to treat myself.

As the woman began to cut my cuticles, I started to obsess about the cuticle remover. What exactly was in that? Sodium hydroxide? Potassium hydroxide? Other hydroxides I hadn't heard of?

The next step was the exfoliation process. My legs were slathered with "green tea" exfoliator. Was there actually any green tea in that cream? What if it was Earl Grey? Or Lipton? But NO! I was going to enjoy this experience. I told myself to stop thinking about what was in the exfoliator! Of course, that didn't stop me from trying to smell it . . .

Wiping chemicals from my mind as the woman (possibly) wiped them from my legs, I relaxed. She rinsed my legs and applied lotions to them. I knew that the lotions would most likely not be paraben-free, but I told myself that I only get a pedi about every four weeks. I felt bad, but I figured a little lotion would be OK.

Then she got up and left.

Oh, I thought, maybe she gives the cream time to sink in. I almost lost it when she came back with two big sheets of plastic wrap. What on earth was she going to do with those? And then my question was answered. She wrapped them around my calves! Oh my God! What had I done?

The "spa" treatment cost more than an extra $10! How many women were getting "spa" pedis and how many giant sheets of plastic were being wasted?

I sat there for what seemed like forever, my legs sweating from being encased in Saran Wrap and from my imagining its chemicals seeping into my pores.

Finally, she unwrapped me. A sigh of relief. The worst was over.


She got up once again and this time returned with more plastic. Two baggies full of liquid...paraffin! She stuck the heel of each foot into a baggie and tied it around my ankle. She slipped each foot into a flipflop and applied my polish to my toes. My pedicure had finally turned "green."

I left the salon feeling guilty.

Guilty because of all the plastic that was used on me. Guilty because of all the chemicals, real or imagined. But even more guilty felt good!

I feel ashamed to admit that, but it's true. Angst aside, it was one of the best pedis I'd ever had.

But taking care of my feet at the expense of the Earth is not an option. Keeping our oceans and landfills plastic-free is more important than a pampering massage. My polish wasn't enough. I've already begun my search for the ultimate green pedi.

Because the Earth deserves the real "spa" treatment.