One of the best sources on the "how-to's" of building a more sustainable
lifestyle is Dale Allen Pfeiffer who lives in Appalachia in Kentucky. Dale has just
launched a section on his website,
Mountain Sentinel.com to point to his recommended sources. This is a treasure
chest -- a lifetime of learning from Dale and his wife Elizabeth.
The Freecycle Network
is a tool that helps you give things away to your neighbors. See if there is a list
for your community. Start giving away all the things at your house that are unused
and wasting space. You will be amazed how many neighbors you have who can use them.
Then when you need something, let folks know and see what emerges. Over time, this
type of barter creates liquidity and relationships in a community.
Some of my Freecycling neighbors in Tennessee realized that they also had lots of things that they would be delighted to part with
for a small amount of money, although not for free. So they created a listserve called
Cheapcycle. Between the two lists, there's lots percolating
that is too small and too local to go through E-Bay.
I don't mind the occasional flood of e-mails. Full
of lore and liveliness, they remind me that the American "can do" spirit
is alive and well.
This summer I visited the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, Oregon --
a reminder that nobody goes to the heart of the matter like the Bard.
What! a speaker is but a prater; a rhyme is but a ballad.
A good leg will fall; a straight back will stoop;
a black beard will turn white; a curled pate will grow bald;
a fair face will wither; a full eye will wax hollow;
but a good heart, Kate, is the sun and the moon;
or, rather, the sun, and not the moon;
for it shines bright and never changes,
but keeps his course truly.
- Henry V, Act V, William Shakespeare
Is there an arts council or local theatre in your area? Remember, it is the artists who lead in the creation and teaching of new ways, sometimes using old masters to do it!