On February 7, Black is the New Green had the opportunity to spend time at the U.S. Green Building Council‘s office space in Washington, D.C. More proof that cool and green go together like red beans and rice. Check it:
Welcome to The Chic List, where we’re serving up real headlines with a side of real talk. Eco-news, pop culture, and current events are all fair game. Whether it rocks your world, inspires you, or just makes you go hmmm, Diva is on it. Fasten your seatbelts mofos, it’s time for The Chic List!
Rihanna donates a five figure sum to help the nonprofit group Wolf Haven save endangered wolves. No surprise here – her love of animals is well documented:
Mayim Bialik celebrated her Emmy nomination with vegan donuts. She failed to mention that her four year old dunked them in her breast milk.
A Safeway shopper in Arizona found a chicken claw in a chicken package. Apparently, all of the package handlers were too busy handling their packages to do a quality inspection.
With a focus on health and sustainability, metal band Korn has installed a hydroponic garden in their studio. I would have posted this earlier but it took a minute to find the backwards ‘R’ on my keyboard. Don’t let KoЯn outgЯeen you!
A-Rod continues to haggle with MLB in order to save his contract money. No word yet on his soul. Wrong kind of green, man. Wrong kind of green.
Sweden has run out of garbage and is forced to import from Norway. Sounds like a first world problem. Wait. Aren’t we supposed to be…? Never mind.
Just callin’ ‘em like I see ‘em. Meet me here next time for a new rundown of the wild or mild, but always Diva-styled. In the meantime catch our chic on Facebook for your daily dose of eco-cool.
Black is the New Green welcomes a new voice this summer: our intern extraordinaire, Tre Gary. Tre is an employee, a student, and a father. In short: a man with a lot on his plate. His is another ideal voice for the real-world lessons of how to B the New Green in everyday life. He offers insights that resonate with real people everywhere. Peep his steezy in the short post below and give him a warm BNG welcome! Look for more updates from Tre in the coming weeks.
Paper or Plastic? Choose Granny Chic!
I keep forgetting to bring those ugly-assed granny print reusable shopping bags with me to the store when I go…not that anyone cares how they look, I just never remember to bring them. During the summertime, when school is out, I buy groceries almost every day. Not only am I sick and tired of collecting the seemingly thousands of plastic bags that are all over the pantry floor, because my kids seem to think that is the perfect place for them, but I’m so done with reeling in plastic bags and other non-degradable fuckery on the end of my fishing line every weekend too. WTF!?!?
Ok, I get it. I used to think plastic bags were the better choice too. They weigh less and take up less space than paper grocery bags, thus costing less to produce and transport. They should be great because no trees had to be cut down to make them, and they take less energy to recycle. Yeah….I’m bullshitting, I never got as deep as all that. But it seems like a no-brainer: use plastic bags, recycle them, get a cookie, simple. Wait… what? Only 1% of the estimated 1 trillion plastic bags consumed annually get recycled? GTFOH. They almost had me there.
Y’all, check this video about what plastic is doing to the oceans and our food chain. I’m ’bout to go put them sexy reusable bags in the car.
I know you want to be a part of the coolest event in town but there are a few things holding you back. Never fear – I am here to set your mind at ease:
1. You don’t need to have all of your team members set before you register. Be a leader and register now to reserve your space in the event. Your slacker friends will thank you for it.
2. The Eco-Hustle is not a race. You will need to think quickly and act quickly, but there is no running from a start to finish line. However, there may or may not be a dance-off. Last year hula hoops made an unexpected appearance.
3. You think you know all there is to know about being green. That’s great. Or you know nothing about being green. Excellent. Or you don’t give two shits about being green. Perfect. Well actually that’s not cool, but I am confident we can change your mind. All knowledge levels and green levels are welcome. The Eco-Hustle is guaranteed fun and guaranteed to impact your life in some way.
4. The cost is $15 per team, not per individual! Your team can have anywhere from 2-5 people. At no more than $7.50 per person, it’s the cheapest fun you can have this side of Gay Street!
So. What are you waiting for? Go ahead and click me – you know you wanna…
Black is the New Green is a stylish call to action. Our mission is to demystify the ‘green’ movement and make environmental awareness and action more feasible and accessible to every demographic. During the Eco-Hustle, participants will race to complete various challenges throughout Baltimore City and engage in a host of environmental activities.
Register your team today! (Teams must have a minimum of 2 people, maximum of 5)
For more information, contact us at email@example.com
Recently, some limp-dicked, hairy-palmed, mouth-breathing, slack-jawed, knuckle-dragging, mother-humping miscreant hacked into my website and placed an unwanted ad on the site. But never fear – the good folks over at GreenGeeks saved the day. Without me even asking, my personally assigned GreenGeek of the day, Brendon O., removed the malicious code that was causing this infection. No muss, no fuss, all love.
You all know Diva don’t shill for nobody…but I will shout it from the mountaintop when businesses and individuals go out of their way to be this fucking cool. If you are thinking of starting a website, I suggest you check out GreenGeeks. If you already have a website, I suggest you switch to GreenGeeks (take it from a reformed HoDaddy subscriber). In addition to taking good care of their customers, GreenGeeks leads the industry in certified green web hosting. It’s very easy to think that the Internet is inherently green since we are all tooling around with our wireless devices, but you better recognize! Web hosting has the potential to rival the airline industry in terms of energy consumption and pollution. For this reason, GreenGeeks is committed to operating in as eco-friendly a way as possible.
Brendon has a special place in a Diva’s heart since he removed the web virus, but other Geek brethren have been just as fly. Mad props also go to Derek D.B., Galvin R., and shift supervisor Mark L.
Today would have been Octavia E. Butler’s 65th birthday and I could not let the day go by without paying homage to this dearly departed Diva.
Octavia Butler is – and I cannot overstate how much I am not overstating this – the Best. Author. Ever. That fact notwithstanding, you may be wondering what that has to do with Black is the New Green. Well, I’m glad you asked. Quite simply, Butler explored social issues, refused to be pigeonholed, and issued irreverent calls to action. (Sound familiar?)
“What sort of future are we creating? Is this the kind of future you want to live in? If it isn’t, what can we do to create a better future?”
I read my first Butler books in the early 2000s: Parable of the Talents and Parable of the Sower. They scared the shit out of me. Telling the story of a world where environmental and economic crises lead to rampant violence and societal chaos, the Parable books are largely thought of as dystopian fiction, but they ring all too true for the present state of our world. Butler was always quick to dismiss notions of her novels being prophetic – she did not write to predict, but to warn and to ask – what are we doing to ourselves and what do we need to change? From those first novels, I was hooked. And it doesn’t hurt that all of Butler’s works have one woman whose destiny is to save her family, her world, her species or whatever. It’s always a woman who did not know she was as strong as she was and she turns out to be fucking amazing. (Are you getting the connection yet?)
“There’s no single answer that will solve all of our future problems. There’s no magic bullet. Instead there are thousands of answers at least. You can be one of them if you choose to be.”
Diva Ø chooses to be part of the solution. Black is the New Green was created to encourage others to harness and develop their individual power. Some individuals must first become aware that they even have power, so we address that too. Obviously as a Black woman, I usually speak to my community first, but it doesn’t matter to me what color you are – I will hold you equally accountable for your actions. I am amazed by all of the BNGers who have chosen to be one of a thousand answers to the present and future problems. Let’s keep that going and recruit more people, shall we?
“How dull it is to have people defining you.”
Breaking barriers as a Black woman and a writer of science fiction, Butler refused to stay within the confines of any labels. While the majority of her writing fell into the sci-fi category, she found success in writing fiction, fantasy, and whatever she damn well pleased. Adding to her fabulousness and defying expectations, Butler was awarded the MacArthur Foundation “genius” grant (just like one of my other favorite women of all time).
“I was attracted to science fiction because it was so wide open. I was able to do anything and there were no walls to hem you in and there was no human condition that you were stopped from examining.”
Much mention has been made of Butler’s environmental concerns – whether her novels took place in the past, present, or future, on Earth, on other planets or even in heaven, Butler always explored environmental issues and her characters’ impact on them. Equally studied has been Butler’s commentary on issues of race, gender, sexuality, religion and economic justice. Missing from the conversation has been the fact that all of these issues are inextricably linked. While I never met her, I dare to say that Butler would not call herself an environmentalist. Aside from shunning labels in general, I think she would find it odd that any human being living in the world would need to actually define themselves as environmentalists. Instead, I believe Butler would assert that if everyone were simply more conscientious, efficient, empathetic and mindful, then many of the world’s ills would be cured. And that is what Black is the New Green is all about. Where Butler creates fantastic, realistic, grim and wonderful worlds to drive this point, Diva Ø sums it up with “Don’t be a dick”. To each their own, right?!
I could never write enough to explain how much I love and respect Octavia Butler, her amazing mind, and her incredible talent. She is pure genius to me. I love her for the example she set as a woman, as an African American, as a writer and as a citizen of the world. If you pay attention, you can see the influence of everyone I love and respect all over Black is the New Green. And if you love me, I hope you will love them too.
“I am a fifty-three-year-old writer who can remember being a ten-year-old writer and who expects someday to be an eighty-year-old writer. I’m also comfortably asocial–a hermit in the middle of Seattle–a pessimist if I’m not careful, a feminist, a black, a former Baptist, an oil-and-water combination of ambition, laziness, insecurity, certainty, and drive.”
Octavia Estelle Butler: June 22, 1947 – February 24, 2006
Mind of My Mind (1977)
Wild Seed (1980)
Clay’s Ark (1984)
Seed to Harvest (compilation)
Adulthood Rites (1988)
Lilith’s Brood (compilation)
Parable of the Sower (1993)
Parable of the Talents (1998)
Bloodchild and Other Stories (1995); Second edition with additional stories (2006)