Tag Archives: recycling

How to Build a Bookshelf for almost nothing

I was in an all too familiar of a situation and one I’d prefer to never be in again. I was broke, bored and had nothing to do except contemplate my situation. My room was a grotesque vision of toppling piles of books and dirty laundry that made you wish you were overlooking a murder scene. Action had to be taken, something had to be done.

My day had shifted and for a reason unknown making a bookshelf seemed like the perfect project to get through the afternoon.
A few cinder blocks would make the foundation and extra boards we had around the house would make perfect shelves. Since for many levels I was using half cinder blocks I used a wall as back support to keep the whole makeshift mess from falling over. After over 6 months of testing the bookshelf has stood up to everything a bookshelf can have thrown on it(sometimes literally) on top of being an impromptu workbench.

DIY Bookshelf

The Frankenstein's Monster of bookshelves, a makeshift bookshelf is an easy and practical way to recycle bad boards and leftover cinder blocks.


Green Canteen Review: Bamboozle the Canteen

Bamboozle the Canteen
It may save me from contributing to the 28 billion plastic bottles used a year but this canteen is not green.

I was going to make this second post about the complexities of defining sustainability, complete with an interview from Clackamas Community College’s former Sustainability Committee Chair Jim Grabil. Instead, I bought a water bottle.

The “Green Canteen” is a 16 ounce thermal aluminum container of contradictions. I bought it in a fit of debauchery at Wal-Greens with an ultimate plan in mind to denude the red lie.

Sustainability is in right now and although it is a positive and progressive movement there is still the usual batch of salivating predators trying to tear off their pieces of an uninformed consumer. Any company with a marketing department has thrown the word green on at least some part of their product and Wal-Green’s is no exception.

The Canteen’s label displays the features, 100 percent recyclable (down from 110 percent which state required them to change due to the laws of nature), stainless steel body produced without the use of toxins, a life expectancy of 100 years and its even made in the super local location of China.

Although recyclable materials are a good start and an unknown method of “toxin-free” production seems to be like a good thing, the Chinese production kill the concept of supporting the local community. The fact that Wal-Greens is child company of Wal-Mart brings another layer of confusion to whether this bottle is really green.

In reality it is just another normal water bottle with a different label. There are advantages of stainless steel canteens but just because it’s not a plastic bottle does not mean it should be marketed as a sustainable product.

The road to sustainability will be marked by the dead bodies of imitators, and this canteen is going to one of them.

This weeks move: no more plastic water bottles.

Cost: $3.49 (and they last a lifetime if treated right)

This site explains some of the benefits of moving away from using plastic bottles.