I’ve run out of clever titles -There is just no end to our wastefulness.

“No end to our wastefullness.”

I had to read that a couple of times after i wrote it. It is all too true.

But not so true – there will be an end to our wastefullness – when we humans get our comeuppance, and the shit really, really hits the fan. Nuclear war? Global warming? Just a couple of scenarios.

Global warming – It looks like this:

SadPolarbear

http://news.discovery.com/animals/endangered-species/photographing-skinny-polar-bears-first-person-150916.htm

Meanwhile, i continue to collect the evidence of our stupidity, barely hanging onto the back of the bus.

I have no solution, only a warning cry.

“Eat drink and be merry for tomorrow we’ll die” ?

No much of a solution, more like a death rattle, wouldn’t you say?

3/1

• 2 half finished 8oz bags of grated cheese – cheddar, and 4 cheese, mexican blend

• 1 half full bottle of dish detergent – how did my neighbors know i was almost out of it?!?

• 1 jar Smucker’s strawberry jelly

• 4 Jimmy Dean sausage links

• Saltines, 1/2 a box, a wee bit stale, but pep ’em up by adding something, liker P’nut butter.

• container of various teas, mostly herbal, to promote sleep.

3/6

• ‘Egglands Best’ eggs – 6. I do the test: drop them in a glass of water, if they sink, or stand on end? they’re good. if they float? toss ’em out. 5 outta 6 pass the test.

• ‘Take out’ container – Chipolte rice and beans – too hot for me as is, but add a small amount to a larger amount of rice? Yummy, good for a week.

• A chocolate birthday cake! some good icing, not too sweet, still got some candles in it. A BIG cake, 1/3 left. I fish out the candles, still got dessert for a whole week!

• 2 pie plate size containers of salad dressing – one ranch, one cheese. I am always asking – why do people throw out perfectly good stuff??? Someone must work in a restaurant, this isn’t the kind of thing you can buy. For me? salad dressing for a good long time. Thanks neighbor!

3/7

I’ve written before that nobody tosses out pizza, i have always opened those big flat boxes and found … nothing!

I must stand corrected! People DO throw out perfectly good pizza! I spied two big 18″ boxes of ‘Mountain Mike’s’ pizza – what mountain mike has to do with pizza, i have no idea. One has… one big slice left, the other? … almost half full, both loaded with toppings. I got a test for pizza – if the crust is still flexible, it’s still good. On monday, it probably arrived sat. or sunday, so it’s still good. I scoop most of it up. I ate some on Tuesday – yum-yum! Microwaves are good for softening things up. And mountain mike? one righteous dude, really good pizza!!

The guy i work for has told me that his very well to do brother in law’s family tosses out anything from a meal they didn’t finish, *any and everything, routinely, reflexively*. Sooo stupid.

3/9

I wake at mid nite – insomnia is a curse and a blessing. I read somewhere quite some time ago about how before electricity and light bulbs, people went to bed shortly after sunset, woke in the middle of the night to have a certain kind of ‘nightlife’ – some talk, some reading by candle light perhaps. 

Tonite, i look out the window to see if it is raining ( it’s not, not yet anyway) and can’t help but notice several things – the first, a potted plant by the window, supported by a wine bottle rack. It’s a palm (someone tossed it out) to which i have added a few broken off sprigs of a jade plant outside my workplace – they have rooted, and thrive. They are joined by a thyme plant i found in the trash, ‘root bulb included.. it thrives, i break off a few sprigs now and then, chew on them, it’s a nice taste. I also stuck a few things from the christmas wreath my step mother sends me, a pine cone, some artificial red berries. And some artificial white plastic flowers. 

A reminder of sorts – life thrives if you give it half a chance.

Another find i have grown fond of – a very nice little wooden picture frame, 8×10″ish. It’s a bit more than a frame – there are two ‘doors’ that open to reveal the picture, which in this case is a surreal desert landscape. A reminder, a window, a portal into another world.

2Frames

Beside that, my radio alarm clock is adorned with a starfish from a basket of momento shells from the phillipines  .- a reminder that there is not one, but many measures of time – the clock… and the ocean, but a few.

I also picked up a small ‘lil succulent from the doorstep of a tenant who didn’t pay rent, got evicted. It is already leaning towards the light from my north facing window. I think… do plants have a brain? No…not in the sense we have. but they do ‘think’ in ways  we can’t describe.

Nice stuff, all of it. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, that’s for sure.

Amidst the cacophony of modern of 21st century life, i really like these reminders.

I need them – and you need  few of your own.

3/11

Quite a good take! Not one but two bags. There is a big couch outside the dumpster area – someone is moving?

That’s always a good sign for me!

• small box of Lipton tea bags, about 20.

• Nature Valley granola bars, almond, box of 6 – 4 left.

• “Sprouts” veggie chips – 1/2 a bag. Veggie chips are potato chips w/ extra flavoring, tomato and spinach, they are multicolored, too, a nice touch. 

(‘sprouts’ is a grocery store chain, mostly on the west coast)

• Chopped pecans, 8 oz, 1/3 full.

• Peanut butter!  15 oz, 2/3 full.

• Brown sugar, 2 lb bag, mostly full.

• a dutch crunch bread roll.

• Sliced rotisserie seasoned chicken 9 oz, 2/3 full, still perfectly good – dated 3/13.

• What’s left of a roll of tin foil – not much, but i rarely use the stuff, i hate buying a roll of it, so this will cover me for a while 🙂

• Some of the above items were in zip-loc bags, so someone hoped to keep them.. but ended up tossing them out anyway?Helloooo???

• At the elevator in my apt bldg, what looks to be a loaf of french bread (in a plastic bag) pokes out of the trash can. Sure enough, that’s what it is. Sandwiches for the week!

PS: it ended up getting moldy after a few days, but i still got a few sandwiches out of it.

3/13

Sunday and monday are pizza days for me! People buy, don’t finish, and toss it out. Today, one entire 12″ pie, and two slices from another pie thrown into the box. Into the freezer, a week’s worth of lunch 🙂

3/16

‘Take out/ delivered’ food seems to encourage waste. Easy come, easy go. Bad habit, way to think, isn’t it?

I find a shopping bag w/ 3 containers of take out – one brussels sprouts, way too gone, i toss it too.

The second, some mixed veggies – also way too gone – bye-bye!

The last one? …some big hunks of roast beef, a little charred on the outside, but i gotta couple of good knives i won’t kill myself with, i trim a bit, and i got some NICE roast beef! Free!

WATCH THIS:

http://harvestpublicmedia.org/content/tossed-out

3/17 – Thursday – dumpsters go to the curb, ‘diving’ is over… for a few days anyway.

3/19 – Saturday

I went over to the Safeway 1 block away for a 5th of ‘vitamin V’ (vodka) – 5$… and a dozen eggs, on sale, 3$.

What did i find in the dumpster on my way back?

Whooaa!! 

A *cornucopia* of good stuff! (cornucopia is ‘an abundant supply’ of good things, if you don’t know the word. 

It has been depicted in art/ paintings/photos for centuries)

cornucopia

• 5 oz can of coconut milk – will go great w/ the vodka i just bought! I added it immediately to the OJ!

• Tea – english breakfast , & and a fruit tea sampler

• Pita chips, most of the bag.

• coconut sugar, most of the bag.

• cashews – a small bit left in a larger can.

• 2 lb bag of brown sugar.

• Mrs. Dash spices – 2 different kinds

• Peet’s coffee (quite popular in the SF bay area), ground, half finished bag

• 2 ‘Thai kitchen noodle kits’ – just add water, & microwave.

• 1 lb himalayan sea salt

One interesting side effect of this dumpster diving I do is that when I find something new to me, i do some research – yep, google and wikipedia, that’s the ticket. And i learn something new.

HimalayaSeaSalt

It’s alot more interesting to look at than Morton’s, ain’t it? 😉

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Himalayan_salt

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sea_salt

There’s always someone that has a different opinion:

(make up your own mind)

https://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/pass-the-salt-but-not-that-pink-himalayan-stuff/

“Mike Adams, the infamous Health Ranger, explains that Himalayan Pink Crystal Salt contains the full complement of minerals and trace elements “just like Mother Earth intended.” It is an unrefined, unprocessed raw salt mined by hand from salt caves that formed 250 million years ago as ocean salt settled into geologic pockets. It is stone-ground, which apparently doesn’t count as “processing.” Table salt is bad stuff, you see, since it was processed to remove all the good stuff and then they had to replace the iodine because people who ate it started to get goiters. Oh, and incidentally he sells the good stuff on his website and even offers a discount.”

http://fitlife.tv/10-amazing-benefits-of-pink-himalayan-salt/

http://www.collective-evolution.com/2016/02/01/this-is-what-happens-to-your-body-when-you-eat-pink-himalayan-salt/

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• 2 oz Tumeric powder, and cumin – healthy spices, good tastin’, too.

• wild rice mixes, several rice medley’s, including 2 – saffron.

• coconut cooking oil/spray – 2 cans

• honey! in the’ lil plastic bear!! *schweet!!* I’ve always liked the ‘lil bear plastic jar, since i was kid!

• crackers – cheez-its, and graham.

• 1 can black beans – can’t go wrong with these! Always good! Why toss them out? Hellooo?

• 5 oz sesame cooking oil. Nicer than corn or vegetable oil for cooking.

>>>I don’t have cupboard space for all this, it will have to sit in bags on my floor. But i WILL save it all. 

I already have many cupboards filled w/ various cereals, grain mixes, & rice, etc.

I live in No. California, just north of San Francisco, in an earthquake zone. 

When the big quake hits? all this stuff will make me happy, and also one very popular guy.

i doubt many people are so well prepared.

I am not well prepared vis-a-vis water – need to grab some 2 gal plastic bottles in the recycling bins, fill ’em up, store them in the bath tub. Not just for drinking, but to able to flush the damn toilet.

I also have a *nice crisp beautifully new BF / 100$ bill* behind a magnet clip on my ‘frig, plus a few 1$ bills… for when nothing counts (all electronic money is *gone, baby, gone*) except cash.

————————-

3/20 sunday

It’s raining lightly, the dumpsters are not covered by any roof, doesn’t slow me down for a moment.

“use by../sell by.. /best by..” dates are really part of the ‘waste’ problem. They inspire people to toss out stuff that is still, and will remain for some time, good. Perfectly good!

What did i find today?

• spinach cheese ravioli – 11/30/15 – into the freezer.

• Odwalla OJ, 12/2/15 – stilll perfecly good.

• Yogurt, in a stupid/wastefull 2 part container – sept 2015

• Guacamole – 8 oz, half full, dated:3/23. It’s now 3/20.

>>>>all the above are perfectly good!

• ‘earth balance’ buttery spread, 2 containers, 15 oz each.

• half a loaf of nice ‘artisanal’ bread, w/ seeds on the crust. It’s a little tough, nothing a microwave won’t remedy.

2/23

• several take out containers: one w/ a good bit of roast beef and some nicely sauteed potato cubes, another with what’s left of a sandwich: the bread & lettuce (i toss that out) but the tomatoes and onion slices are OK. The roast beef/steak? is excellent!

• A mesh bag w/ a few brussels sprouts – some are a bit brown, but hey, they are like little cabbages, peel off the outside layer, it’s still perfectly good.

• eggs! 2 containers, one 18 count carton, 6 left, all still good – dated 2/15.

• more eggs! 12 carton container dated 3/14, all still good.

This all makes me get creative w/ cooking! How to use all of what i’ve found.

Tomorrow’s lunch? A burrito wrap – white flour burrito, egg salad, some of the steak, some of the potatoes, some salsa, and some cheese.

Sounds like lunch to me!

3/25 Friday.

The dumpsters get emptied on thurs. am, alotta times i won’t even bother to look on thurs or friday pm. But something told me today i should check. Sure enough, my instincts are good! Someone’s moving, there’s enough clutter to make the bags on top within reach.

• 2 12″ thin crust pizzas, frozen. Basic cheese, not exciting… but it’s just a starting point for me, see what else is lingering in the frig, and add to them.

There’s a new grocery chain store a few blocks away, i checked it out when i had to go to a store right next door. Tha place is called ‘sprouts’ – very nice stuff, rather different from Safeway. People are tossing out good stuff from there, just because of the damned ‘sell by’ dates!!

• shredded chicken meat, 1/2 lb, dated 3/23, mostly full.

• Potato salad .9 lb, mostly full, dated 3/24

• Coleslaw w/ cider vinegar horseradish, dated 3/23 – yummy!

These best by/sell by dates are really are problem!

As usual, California is leading the way:

http://www.sfgate.com/food/article/Food-waste-is-target-of-legislation-on-expiration-6975097.php

http://revsustainability.com/blog/16-tips-businesses-individuals-reduce-food-waste-holidays-year-round/?utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=Blog%20Post%20Promo&utm_term=food%20waste&utm_content=Food%20Waste

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San Francisco, ‘the Silicon Valley of Recycling’

By Matt Richte – MARCH 25, 2016

————————

Here’s a company making software that helps merchants plan better:

http://shelfbot.co

I hope that my blog here gets read, and inspires people in whatever way it can.

For one thing -‘Waste not, want not’ – Benjamin Franklin’s words. Don’t toss things out! Plan carefully, microwaves are a great device – leftovers from what you had for dinner can be *zapped* for an easy lunch.

I still remember growing up in small-town Maine, with a big garden out back that all us kids had to work on, from start to finish. My dad was a dad, but also a teacher in disquise (sic?).

We planted, watered, harvested, and i remember my mom and dad working late into the evening, parboiling for freezing, there was a second freezer in a back room, just for all this. We ate out of it all winter.

One thing “modern culture/’fast food’ ” encourages? 

‘Easy come, easy go’ – a terrible, stupid, & unsustainable idea.

3/26 Sat.

This is usually a good day to ‘go shopping’, so to speak. People are at home not work, they do things around the house.. like clean out the fridge.

• not one.. but two! bags of romaine lettuce hearts, 3 in each bag. Neither has been touched, or even opened. I’ll make a big bunch of chicken salad with the shredded chicken found yesterday. 

• …and then i’ll put that between 2 slices of country white bread, from a bag of 5 slices also found today.

• a carry out container, chinese food, white rice, small, not even touched. a little old, but microwaving it with a bit of miso broth ( found not long ago) and it’s fine.

• brussels sprouts, ziploc bag, half a dozen.

• cheddar cheese, the last of the bag, good for one sandwich at best.

• asparagus! a big bundle, a bit of it on the outside is a bit mushy, but a little ‘editing’, and there’s plenty left. 

Tonites dinner? roast beef, mashed potatoes, asparagus. (lunch was some potato salad and pizza) – I didn’t pay a dime for any of it. 🙂

3/27 Sunday

• Just one thing but it illustrates a VERY important idea:

“Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water.”

Heard my parents say it – what a concept.

So… here we have a loaf of bread (sprouted whet berry and sesame seed) with a bit of mold.

SavingBread

What is the solution? NOT the trash, dear reader, the solution is a simple knife and a few minutes time, trim off that mold. SO simple!… but this consumer wasn’t thinking smart, they weren’t thinking at all.

So… i must ask… are you (thinking)?

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