Feb 23, 2012

The Green Thing

It all started with a mail chain that got fowarded and set me on memory lane. Initial story as below:
Courtesy Little Green Blog
Checking out at the store, the young cashier suggested to the older woman that she should bring her own grocery bags because plastic bags weren't good for the environment.

The woman apologized and explained, "We didn't have this green thing back in my earlier days."

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

How True.. All we see today is Green, Green, and Green.. Surely, a lot of us are not that old going back 7 decades, but a lot of us have grown up in the "Non Green Environment".

Soft drink bottles were returned back to the stores for 50 fils, which not only gave some extra pocket money, but the bottles were sent back for washing / sterilizing and resold. The same bottle gets used again. We never drank Cokes and Pepsi in plastic bottles, simply because these were wrap sealed. Nothing green about it.

School meant walking, even if it was for 30 minutes. No Dad or Mom driving their gas guzzling 4x4's that would drop us to school, simply because petrol was cheaper than water.

Elevators were only in high rise buildings, but we never thought of these if they did not exist in ours, even if it meant climbing up and down ten times a day. It could be as simple as a friend calling or going to the grocery store to buy milk and in the bargain get a lollipop. We walked every where, never needed a gym that had enough lights to turn night into day or worked on machines that were huge energy busters.

One TV, one Radio, One AC. That for many was their luxury of appliances. TVs mostly black and white, Radio in the living room, Ac's never switched on unless it was really hot and even then only when it was time to sleep. Once the room cooled, the AC was switched off. We now have 40 inch LED's in every room, home theaters to listen to a CD of light music and Central Ac's with free chillers that are on all day.

Crystal glasses that we would take back home would be wrapped in all our old clothes and newspapers, fitted with rubber bands. Today we use foam, bubble wrap, and we even plasti wrap our bags. Once we reach, we dump it all. The amount used would be enough to cover up three people without clothes, if ever these could be stitched.

Water in steel glasses, no one cared how many people had used the glass before us. Some water, a swipe of the hand and the glass is clean. Eight glasses of water a day today, and eight plastic cups used as a minimum. Disposable plastic pens? We grew up on ink pens.

We switched off electricity in the rooms where we did not sit, simply because it cost money. We never let the AC run for two hours to cool the room before we could go and sleep, nicely tucked under a 7 kilo blanket. Gardens were in our balconies, today we create them outside our villa's and have power generated motors to manage them.

We destroy forests then host conferences on how to save the Amazon. We run our electricity all year long; switch it off for one hour in a year and proudly declare that we participated in this. Global conferences entail thousands of people travelling all over the world for two days, to discuss what we can save for our future, without ever compromising on our present.

It does make one wonder as to was our upbringing wrong, or was our environment not in line. We see the generations today, do everything that our parents taught us not to do, however we are unable to tell our future generations the same. What also never surprises, is that every generation expects the previous generation to save the world for them to live and enjoy, without ever realizing that the world today exists because of the past generations.

Development does bring its costs, however there is an element of common sense, which unfortunately we seem to have lost some where along the way. Is it simply to hide our mistakes that we know we can never stop? Is it simply a matter of who cares? Or is it society's plague that we ourselves have built and have no means of getting out.

For me, I am still glad, I was born before the Green Environment, and if given a chance, would go through it all again


  1. We do are slaves of the society which is built up on hypocrisy that we often tend not to revolt even if needed or possible.
    I even liked the "education v/s intelligence" on your blog.

  2. Sush,
    Truly agree, and even though we ask ourselves the question, as to why, and knowing fully well that it is hypocritic, we continue to support the same. However as long as we know within ourselves and on our own do our bit ourselves, I believe we still have a chance..

    Thanks for the note on the post.. Rajesh

  3. Nice post. Considering population growth resulting into multiplied demands and flourishing/ever growing market, the green is going to be only a catchy word limited to seminars, conferences and of course internet.
    A little caring heart and action at individual level may be of some help.