Wednesday, March 05, 2008

We Is Not Learning

We read in this morning's WashPost of Conspicuous Organic Consumpion. "Anna Sova Luxury Organics Turkish towels, 900 grams per square meter, $58 apiece. The eco-friendly 600-thread-count bed sheets, milled in Switzerland with U.S. cotton, $570 for queen-size.... [We buy a] 2008 LS 600 hybrid for $104,000 (it actually gets fewer miles per gallon than some traditional makes, but, see, it is a hybrid). Accessorize the interior with an organic Sherpa car seat cover for only $119.99...."

Pretty sharp stuff, for the petroleum-based rapacious destroyer of forests that is a newspaper.

We here chez Jingo are trying to be good green citizens. As they burn out, we've been replacing our incandescent lightbulbs with those newfangled windy-twisty jobbers. I used up the last one just now, and was preparing to throw the package away when a whacking huge observation smacked me like the hot kiss at the end of a wet fist. (Twelve points for ref.) I wrestled the thing to the floor and photographed it immediately:

Do you see what I saw?

The package is huge! It's twice the size it needs to be! The space used for branding the fucking thing is the same size as the thing itself! And of course, what is all that wasted space made of? A little cardboard and a ho-ho-whoooole lot of thick plastic. This package isn't meant to Save the World; it's meant to Sell Lightbulbs. And I, sucker of suckers, thinking I was Saving the World, Bought Lightbulbs. Probably killed about eight acres of rainforest doing it.

Well. The first thing to do, I suppose, is to fish the damned thing out of the trash and put it with the recycling. (There will be a sign on the recycling dumpster: "Bottles and Cans Only!" Screw it. It goes in.)

Now, those little windy-twisty lightbulbs are fragile. Really fragile. You can't wrap them in jute or switchgrass or something. They need a shell to protect them. Maybe the recycled cardboard they make egg cartons out of might do the trick. But with examples like the above, where the need to brand a product supersedes the need to actually be environmentally responsible, we're probably consuming ourselves into extinction.

(Free tip from the Jingmeister: In the few weeks we have before the Collapse of Civilization As We Know it, there's a bloody fortune to be made in the invention of a device that lets you change those lightbulbs on the ceiling while standing on the floor. The thing I use now, the one designed for rounded, incandescent bulbs, has so far broken three of the new ones.)


Shep said...

Nick Danger, Third Eye.....

Decatur Dem said...

Oh, you mean Nancy!

Linkmeister said...

And in my neighborhood, try to find a 3-way CFL. Cain't be done.

Neddie said...

Shep, Dec. Dem.: Enjoy the points, boys! Let me know how you spent them!

Dope Humor of the Seventies! Shoes for Industry!

Linkmeister: That's 'cause they all break in transit to Hawaii.

Decatur Dem said...

Bid for bonus points:
In Nick Danger, Third Eye, Catherwood the Butler lets fly with a "Coo-coo-ca-choo" of his own.

I guess it's obvious where much of my attention was misdirected in the early seventies.

J. D. said...

"of of"? Nick never said *that*!

(I'm so darn picky)

Neddie said...

Glad I've got a good proofreader!

Carl the Big Fool said...

Don't those new light bulbs have mercury in them?

So if you've broken three of them, you may have sort of poisoned yourself.

Neddie said...

Mucking farvelous.

giggles said...

It's called a "stepladder."

bobby lightfoot said...


1. Shove lightbulb up bowhunting neocon shit bag's ass.

2. Lift bowhunting neocon shit bag up via pulley system.

3. Position threads in light socket.

4. Spin B.N.S.B.

5. Viola! Da Gamba.

6. You can remove this if you want.

David Harmon said...

Noting your occasional fits of musical analysis and historiography, I present this terminal-stage case of the syndrome :-) :

Halleluja at

Jennifer said...

I think we've spent more on gas transporting the burnt out bulbs to a responsible recycling location. There's no just throwing these away.

Carl said...

Pick up your cues! Better take 'em out of the cellophane before they scorch.

Carl said...

Funny thing is, in that packaging, the multiple bulb one, they're using less plastic than they would if those bulbs were sold individually (they can't be sold loose because of the mercury issue). I'm not sure the complaint is as valid as it at first appears.

Devil's Rancher said...

I'm tepid about these things, at best. 5 years, my ass. They don't last any longer than an incandescent bulb in my ancient wiring, so I'm spending $20.00 to save $5.00 in electricity every month.

The emerging technology that'll wipe these things off the map before they take a foothold is LED. When a common screw-in LED bulb goes on the market at a reasonable price, not only will it consume less energy than a Fluorescent, it'll actually last the 5 years these boobs falsely claim.

I know it's coming, because I've seen the revolution in caving headlamps. There's a single 3-watt white LED headlamp that'll light up the roof of Carlsbad's big room. And they seem to have worked out the unpleasant blue cast they shed up until a few years ago. Now it's just a matter of making 'em run at 120 volts AC, and getting them into a screw base.