Sunday, 17 July 2011

The Green Thing

In the line at the store, the cashier told an older woman that she should bring her own grocery bags because plastic bags weren't good for the environment.

The woman apologised to him and explained, "We didn't have the green thing back in my day."

The clerk responded, "That's our problem today. Your generation did not care enough to save our environment."

He was right -- our generation didn't have the green thing in its day.
Back then, we returned milk bottles, soda bottles and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over. So they really were recycled.
But we didn't have the green thing back in our day....
We walked up stairs, because we didn't have an escalator in every store and office building. We walked to the grocery shops and didn't climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time we had to go two blocks.

But we didn't have the green thing in our day....

Back then, we washed the baby's nappies because we didn't have the throw-away kind. We dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling machine burning up 220 volts -- wind and solar power really did dry the clothes. Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing.

But we didn't have the green thing back in our day....

Back then, we had one TV, or radio, in the house -- not a TV in every room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief (remember them?), not a screen the size of Wales.

In the kitchen, we blended and stirred by hand because we didn't have electric machines to do everything for us.

When we packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, we used a wadded up old newspaper to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap.

Back then, we didn't fire up an engine and burn petrol just to cut the lawn. We used a push mower that ran on human power. We exercised by working so we didn't need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity.

But we didn't have the green thing back then....

We drank from a fountain when we were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time we had a drink of water.

We refilled writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and we replaced the razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull.

But we didn't have the green thing back then.

Back then, people took the bus and kids rode their bikes to school or walked instead of turning their parents into a 24-hour taxi service.

We had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances. And we didn't need a computerised gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest pizza joint.

But isn't it sad the current generation laments how wasteful we older people were just because we didn't have the green thing back then?

6 comments:

Adullamite said...

Good find!

miruspeg said...

This is brilliant. We were green and we didn’t know it. Let’s go back to the old days but with all of the knowledge that we have now!

It's only in hindsight that we realise what indeed out childhood was really like.

Peggy xxxxx

A Daft Scots Lass said...

Tree huggers will never be the same.

Sausage Fingers said...

Great post, I will use this the next time the bairns give me grief...
Sausage.

kenfitlike said...

dinna haud back, like!

fantastic - and Bang on the Button - rant there, Mike.

I bet you felt better after getting that out!

kenfitlike said...

mind you on seeing the title The Green Thing. I thought you were going to have another pop at Hibs!