First, a confession. I was back in DC (where I'm from) last weekend and the shopping from the edge experiment took a back seat. I didn't do much shopping there, but the little I did do (with my mom) did violate some of the rules I've laid out for myself. The night I made pizza for my parents, I did a pretty good job: only the pizza sauce and olives were from a center aisles. But when I was shopping for a party that my parents were having for their newest granddaughter, I was less able to adhere. It's not my household (anymore) and, thankfully (for my parents) I'm passing (slowly) out of the stage in which I think I know more than they do. Besides, they conserve in other ways like doing all their dishes by hand even though they have a dish washer.
In my absence, my husband was instructed to at least try to keep our house a center-aisle free zone. It was a risky maneuver.The first time we went shopping together, he asked if he had to adhere to the rules when he was shopping. "Do what your conscience tells you to do," I told him. "You don't want me to do that," he retorted. "My conscience will let me do pretty much whatever I want to." Clearly I'd forgotten who I married. My husband's mantra is, in the famous words of South Park's Cartman, "Whatever. I do what I want."
But to my pleasant surprise, what the old man wanted to do this time was actually participate in the experiment. I expected to find telltale frozen pizza boxes and soda cans in the house, garbage, or recycling but instead E stuck with eating leftovers, frozen pizza crust, and grilled burgers. His veg intake might have been a little low but so was his consumption of over-packaged, processed foods. Yay old man!
The good news is that we're down from averaging about three bags of garbage a week to two. But the biggest difference is probably in the number of items we're putting into our recycling bins. Yes, you say, but recycling is good! And reducing is better!