Reduce, reuse, but don’t recycle

by Katie on February 21, 2011

I actually think what I’m about to post here for all the world to see may be the one sentence that will embarrass Brandon the most.

More than the passion-fruit tea-drinking. More than the crazy daisies. More than when he thought vienna sausages were healthy eating.

Without further ado, here it is:

We recycle.

Or rather our household recycles. Meaning, I recycle.

Now, we aren’t crazy about it or anything. I just began to notice that the trash bin in our office was always filled with nothing but paper — and a lot of it. I started to feel guilty just dumping a pile of paper into the dumpster every couple weeks, so I sought out recycling options in our town.

Since we live outside the city limits, I have to load up our recycling and take it to the dump center in town. Which isn’t as big of a deal as it sounds. It’s right between the irrigation district office and the bank, which is a trip I make about every two days. None of it has to be separated or sorted. It just all gets thrown into a giant blue dumpster. So really, no different than hauling our other garbage to his parents’ dumpster.

But boy, does Brandon think so.

He hates the fact that we recycle. He is anti-recycling. Unabashedly against it. Calls me a hippie. Purposefully places things like banana peels and gum wrappers in the recycle bin, and piles of magazines in the trash can. Just to prove the point that it inconveniences him by having to take extra steps to put things in the correct receptacle.

It’s a daily battle of me trying to be a good citizen, play a small part in preserving natural resources for posterity, and Brandon fighting me the whole way.

The thing is, we’re all about avoiding being a wasteful household. We make sure every pan of leftover food is practically licked clean. We reuse plastic baggies, assuming it is sanitary to do so, depending upon its former contents. We hate just throwing anything out.

But when it comes to participating in a recycling program, Brandon not only resists it, or isn’t “into” it; he actually opposes it. He says it takes three people “like me” to make up for the wastefulness of people “like him”. He somehow sees voluntarily participating in recycling makes him less of a man or something.

So yes, around our house, we reuse and reduce waste, but it’s not okay to recycle.

I do anyway.


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