You know what’s gross? How much we dispose of unnecessarily every day. According to the Ubyssey, the SUB produces 40 bags of trash every day, just out of the bathrooms. Picture that. Picture your bedroom, full to the ceiling of barely used paper towels. Now imagine that happening every day. I mean, really?
A student project has been created with the intent of reducing the amount of paper towel waste UBC students produce (Ubyssey article here). They’ve set up a booth in the SUB handing out handkerchiefs in exchange for a donation to the Ancient Forest Alliance (you can also pay five dollars for a prettier hanky, which will help make the project more sustainable in the future).
I picked up mine today, and I think it’s time for a behavioural change. Yes, it’s a bit easier just to take the available paper towel and throw it out after and not have to worry about washing your hankie or how to dry it after use. But in a lot of ways, doing things that harm the environment are born out of laziness and convenience. Taking just the little bit of effort here by using that little towel could result in hundreds, maybe thousands of pounds of paper towels not being used. And in turn, less trees would need to be cut down. And more living trees = healthier planet!
A few other ways you can cut out needless disposables out of your life: bring a reusable travel mug for your morning mocha and keep your own chopsticks handy for when you’re craving sushi. In the kitchen, opt for a rag instead of paper towels and tupperware instead of plastic wrap.
Doing something alone can be scary and sometimes not terribly fun (or so we think), and often times it can discourage us from doing something at all. This past weekend, I had my heart set on going to Victoria but none of my friends wanted to go with me. I hummed and hawed for nearly two weeks prior: to go or not to go, that was the question!
In the end, I decided to go by myself. After all, I’m only here for four years and I’m going to make the most of that time and see the surrounding areas and explore! And man, am I ever glad I went. It was definitely an exciting adventure: I took a ferry and booked a hotel by myself for the very first time. I feel like a grown up. (I’m pretty proud of myself.)
My hands don’t want me to type much more, so here’s a video of my trip from the video blog I do with my friends:
Don’t be scared to do what you want just because no one else is going with you!
This afternoon I had the pleasure of being part of a workshop brainstorming ideas about how UBC should organize its approach to getting more students involved on campus. A lot of great discussion was had, and I really want to comment here on how different kinds of involvement are valued.
First of all, I think it’s important to broaden what we define as “involvement.” Yes, starting your own club or heading a committee is an involvement, a huge one, but sometimes it can feel like if you aren’t doing a BIG thing, it doesn’t count. Something like going to one of the gardens on campus, seeing a play, attending an event, or just showing up for a recreational club meeting (you don’t have to be on the exec!) all count, in my books. There is a broad spectrum of depth of involvement, ie. how much time and commitment an activity takes, but all should be counted and valued equally. For example, someone commuting and taking six courses is probably not going to have the same amount of time to spend doing extracurriculars as someone taking three courses and living on campus. If the six-course commuter gets involved by attending the occasional AMS event or club meeting, there is nothing “less” about that in any way than the three-course rezzie being an SLC co-chair. They’re just different experiences, and both are important.
Secondly, the type of activity one is involved with can sometimes vary in value. I am going to use myself as an example this time: personally, committees tend to drive me nuts, and while I commend those who love charity work, it’s just not for me. My life can be a hell sometimes, and I want involvement to be an escape from that, just to be fun. To be a place where I make/be with friends. I want to help myself. If that’s selfish, well, quite frankly I think that’s a rude label because all human beings are selfish at some time, so excuse me for being selfish. So I joined knitting club. Now personally, I don’t think that joining a recreational club should be any “less” than say, joining a club that fundraises for cancer research, or being a residence advisor (also not my thing). Wanting to get involved for the sake of finding your “people” or your “home”, or just purely to have fun, does not make you a worse person, or a less important person, than someone getting involved to give back to the community or hone a skill set.
The main thing I’d like to see more of, I suppose, is all involvement in its myriad forms to be recognized equally.
That's me! I'm a fourth year, introverted, Winnipeg-hailing, blog-writing, cookie-eating, harp-playing, yoga-doing, blanket-knitting music student at UBC. I'm always trekking around campus in my Pumas and massive black backpack, and if you spot me, come say hi! It would be nice to know someone actually reads these things!