Human Nature Nuggets

Unlike sheer instinct, human nature involves individual thought as to how we should handle or improve various situations. As homo sapiens, we never know what will happen as a result, but each of us tries by doing what we think is the best solution. Here are some examples…

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Location: St. Paul, Minnesota, United States

I am a writer at heart, a proofreader by trade, but without a soul if it were not for the nuthatches crawling down my trees, the robins, chickadees, cardinals, and yes, the much-maligned jibbering starlings that create their own unique concerts. I have wildflowers and perennials squeezed into my front and back yards and along the curb of my house in the city. My greatest job: I was a reporter for a locally-based newspaper, where I wrote human interest and news articles, but now I am a freelance writer, both online and in print. See MY ONLINE ARTICLES on how to ATTRACT BIRDS and BUTTERFLIES, and the HEALTHIEST NATURAL FOODS at my contributor page

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Why don’t more people recycle and give away the used items they don’t want instead of throwing everything into the garbage?

If we have to use plastic, and realistically I think we do, corn-based plastic food containers (see my Oct. 22 post), as compared with oil-based ones, seem to be the closest we’ve come yet to lowering the burden on our ever-growing landfills. Yet the only real way to lessen the burden is if more people recycle instead of throwing everything into the garbage. Countless cities throughout the United States now have programs in which they’ll pick up recyclable items right outside our doorsteps, but too many people aren’t using them. I figure these malfeasants come under four groups.

1. Some people refuse to recycle because they don’t care about it. It’s their human nature. (I compare them with shoppers who abandon their grocery carts in the middle of the parking lot, where they’ll block traffic, instead of bringing them back to the provided nooks.)

2. Some people actually forget that they could recycle instead.

3. Others pull the old non-voting excuse: "There are so many other people recycling, it won’t matter if I throw away the little garbage I have." And then there’s...

4. Those who are just too lazy to get off their butts and put their recyclable items into separate containers, then carry them down to the curb. Apparently bringing several containers down besides their garbage takes too much effort.

Which group do you fall under? I’m not perfect, but besides recycling paper, cardboard, glass, metal, etc., whenever I can get my hands on typewritten paper that’s only been used on one side, I save it until I have a boxful, then bring it to a nearby school. The students use it in their computer classes. When we use Campbell’s soup at home, I recycle the cans, but first I take off the labels and bring stacks of them to the same school. They save up and redeem the coupons to purchase items for the students that they otherwise would be unable to get. There are many nature-related organizations and groups that accept used ink cartridges for recycling. This in turn gives them extra assets to help further their causes. (My other site,, has more ideas in the comments under my “Reusable or recycle goods wanted or available” category.)

Also, to get rid of unwanted household items, check to see if your city has a freecycle program. The Freecycle Network was started in May 2003 to promote waste reduction in Tucson, Arizona's downtown and help save desert landscape from being taken over by landfills. Now there are freecycle groups around the globe. If you go to the site, you can find one in your location where you can receive lists of items people need or are giving away, or you can list things you need or want to get rid of that someone else would appreciate being able to get free. This pianos, fax machines…you name it!

And if you live in the Twin Cities in Minnesota, check out this listing service for residents. It is part of an effort to reduce the amount of reusable goods being thrown away. Go to the Free Market. (10/29/05—Darlene)

If you think it stinks when you dump your garbage in the garbage can, imagine what it would smell like if our planet became overrun with landfills!


Anonymous yakura said...


1/17/2008 4:32 PM  

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