January 1st, 2009

January 1st, 2009, NYC, NY

It’s the New Year (shout-out to 2009) and Marine and I were searching for what’s next. On the 1st of this New Year we ended up at La Palapa Cocina Mexicana in the East Village, eating really fresh Mexican food with some fantastical margaritas (good times). It is in this magical place that we came up with a plan. Our plan is to become real life educated consumers (time frame one year), in our own way. What that means is whatever we buy we need to know before we buy:

1. Location of business in regards to our Spanish Harlem apartment (we just learned yesterday that our neighborhood’s nickname is SpaHa. I really don’t like the way SpaHa rolls off my tongue).

2. Who owns the company

3. Company’s philosophy

4. Are they green? How so?

5. How the employees are treated

6. Where does the company get their inventory

7. Price

8. Product review (by the people and the industry)

9. Company review (by the people and the industry)

Exceptions

1.    Medical Prescriptions

2.    Cigarettes

3.    We Know, you don’t need to know everything

4.    Eating out, Delivery, and Pick-Up

5.    Rent

6.    Bills like ConEd, Phone, Mobile, Web Hosting, etc.

Exceptions does not mean we do whatever we want. It is just places where we indulge somewhat, it is a freedom of sorts. Who knows where this year will lead us, but I know for myself if I try to control all my elements I fail. I need to have some leeway to breath.

Today is the 3rd of January and here is the list of things we have purchased under this new regime.

1.    New York Cake and Baking Distributor, 56 West 22nd Street, NYC, NY – $8.99, tax – $0.75, total – $9.74 -Fox Run Kitchens – French Bread Pan – Made in China, Fox Run Craftsmen Ivyland, PA 18974, Concord, ON L4K 3V4, tinplate – Cara

2.   Poland Spring Natural Spring Water, 700mL, Poland Spring Water Company, Division of Nestle Waters, North America Inc. , Greenwich, CT 06830, Mood Building Vendor, 225 W. 37th Street, NYC, NY 10018, $2.00, #1 PETE plastic bottle, blue flip top – Marine

3.    Mood Fabrics,  225 W. 37th Street, NYC, NY 10018, $100 gift card – Cara

4.    Supercuts [Regis Corporation], 460 3rd Ave, NYC, NY 10016, $19 hair cut, $5 tip – Marine (It was Marine’s first time going to a Supercuts. She had said she was going to go there before the 1st of January to experience the true American less than $20 haircut. It is something everyone should experience once.)

As you can see we haven’t done so well…so far… Keep in mind this is a learning experiment. :] We bought bottled water on the 2nd of January and I didn’t even realized we had failed until today. Marine and her SuperCuts haircut… What you have to keep in mind is we have stopped ourselves from buying multitudes of things from the 1st to today, to take the time to research. For real… I will be tracking our progress here to make myself (and maybe Marine) more accountable. I know at least one person in my family reads this on occasion… :]

Keep it real.

-Cara

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UPDATE [February 24th, 2009] – OK, I need to reassess this project as it was way more difficult than I thought. I am definitely more conscientious about what I buy, but that leave me little time to log it all. I will cover cool finds here and if it becomes easier, or I become more motivated I will track my consuming for more than one day. :]

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