Re: Our family values will save us.

1

It's funny, I just sent a letter to Rick Perry challenging him to a rap battle on the topic of unemployment.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:28 PM
horizontal rule
2

Based on that map, I think I'm going to take a nice long shower. And maybe find a hot tub to fill up.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:32 PM
horizontal rule
3

You'd think the Georgia/Tenessee drought/border conflict would be warning enough. Well. One does hear that beleagured governments seek conflict to hide their troubles, but conflict between US States? Again? Is there even anything Texas could suck backwards from Mexico?


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:32 PM
horizontal rule
4

Heh. I'm writing a report on getting people to conserve water right at this very minute. If you guys wanted to chime in with suggestions for what your district could do to get you to Change Your Ways, there's a chance my governor would read that in two weeks.

Raise rates is the usual first suggestion.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:33 PM
horizontal rule
5

Shut down Sea World.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls, L/ion | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:34 PM
horizontal rule
6

You people are going to be crawling back to the Great Lakes region soon. The Michigan unemployment rate is going to go up to 40% half because of industry collapse and half because of an influx of drought refugees.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:36 PM
horizontal rule
7

Seize all the golfcourses by eminent domain and turn them into native flora preserves.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:42 PM
horizontal rule
8

Why have you lot not told me about these schools paying children for good marks, neat uniform etc?

Roland Fryer, the bloke who came up with it, just said, "I teach economics at Harvard. There are no students in my class who love learning. I don't love learning; I love what learning brings me." Ugh.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:44 PM
horizontal rule
9

Seize all the golfcourses by eminent domain and turn them into native flora preserves for teenagers to have sex and get high in.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:45 PM
horizontal rule
10

1. Ban hygiene ads on TV.* The media-fueled American obsession with bathing and bath products is bad for the water supply. (Hey, we banned liquor ads.)

2. Come up with cute stickers like the ones that are all over street drains (the little fish that says "Drains to River -- Don't Dump!"). Put them in public settings where people are situationally likely to waste water.

3. Impose a luxury or sin tax on Chem-Lawn and the other folks who make money off of people wanting to have green, perfect lawns.*

4. Make PSAs that teach handwashing and sink-full-of-dishes dishwashing techniques.*

5. Subsidize the purchase price of front-loading washing machines. (True story: I did not buy one a few years ago because I just couldn't afford it, no matter how many times I tried to problem-solve around it.)

6. Create a Smokey-the-Bear type character to inculcate water conservation habits.

*Actually I think these are terrible, counterproductive, possibly illegal ideas.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:49 PM
horizontal rule
11

Hey, look what region's not doing so bad, especially compared to a few years ago.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:50 PM
horizontal rule
12

Why have you lot not told me about these schools paying children for good marks, neat uniform etc?

Because it's repulsive and depressing.

If I could ban one phrase from English, it would be "make learning fun" and its variants. Talk about an appalling premise.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:51 PM
horizontal rule
13

Subsidize, or at least identify recommended plumbers, to check your house for leaks and fix them?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:51 PM
horizontal rule
14

Run ads about shower-sharing, like they did in Australia.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:53 PM
horizontal rule
15

6. Install those water-guard things on fire hydrants so that when people illegally open them on brutally hot days, less water gets wasted.*

(Maybe you don't have brutally hot, miserably humid days in California. Do they have humidity there?)

*Yes, this is a harm-reduction technique. YES, I still think it's a good idea.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:54 PM
horizontal rule
16

Our family values will save us.

I was thinking of calling you and helping talk you through the drought, but really, my cows children.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:56 PM
horizontal rule
17

Do they have humidity there?

Do they ever.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:58 PM
horizontal rule
18

Perdenales river

The which river?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 3:58 PM
horizontal rule
19

Sure is rainy here. But I'm with you in spirit! (And come summer, in drought.)


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:03 PM
horizontal rule
20

Ban hygiene ads on TV.* The media-fueled American obsession with bathing and bath products is bad for the water supply. (Hey, we banned liquor ads.)

This isn't so much on the water supply horizon, but the water quality people and groundwater people would LOVE this. They already hate all the body product things that go through wastewater treatment plants and get into groundwater.

Cute logos/Drains to river type stuff.

We're already putting cards on tables at restaurants, OR SHOULD BE. I'm not sure what other situations could be targeted.

Washing machine and toilet rebates are in full force.

Subsidize, or at least identify recommended plumbers, to check your house for leaks and fix them?

Honestly, I don't know why major urban districts don't have a plumber on staff who'd come out for free and replace the washers on your faucets. Seems like a good returns on a $100,000 staff person. You'd get the most gains in the first few years, so maybe this would be a periodic program (offer it for one year in ten or something). But I never hear of it.

Put flow reducers on hydrants.

I never hear of people opening hydrants for fun/heat relief out here. It doesn't seem to be part of the culture or something. Don't think this would save lots of money.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:11 PM
horizontal rule
21

I mean, flow reducers on hydrants saving lots of water for the money they would cost.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:12 PM
horizontal rule
22

Our family valuesvalves will save us

||

I defended successfully: yay!

|>


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:14 PM
horizontal rule
23

Congrats, Joie de Toilette.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:15 PM
horizontal rule
24

I never hear of people opening hydrants for fun/heat relief out here. It doesn't seem to be part of the culture or something.

It would amuse me greatly for someone to do this in San Francisco. Preferably when I am a safe distance away.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:17 PM
horizontal rule
25

And congrats, Thelonious Jumpstart.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:18 PM
horizontal rule
26

Those are NYC culture -- the issue isn't so much wasting water, as lowering water pressure to the point that firefighting's a problem. The way it works in practice is that you (an adorable street urchin with a gang of fellow urchins) walk up to the local firehouse, and say, "Hey Mr. Firefighter, can you put a sprinkler on the hydrant in front of the bodega on Academy and Vermilyea?" And the firefighter goes out and screws the adapter on the hydrant, and opens it up so it's a sprinkler, not gushing into the street. (This often fails to happen, and the firehydrants just get opened.)

But it looks cheap -- it's just an adapter for the hydrant. You need local firehouses to make it work, so I'm not sure how it would work anyplace less dense than here.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:18 PM
horizontal rule
27

It doesn't seem to be part of the culture or something.

Yeah, that's why I asked my sort-of-dumb question about humidity. I realized that all of my iconic images of those situations come from places like Boston, NY, Philadelphia, Baltimore -- all the big East Coast cities where it's basically a ritual.

I'm very envious of the washing machine rebates.

As far as the plumber on call, that is genius and totally the kind of thing that some foundation should subsidize as a pilot demonstration project. The only holdup I can see is a jurisdiction problem -- you'd want the plumber to be on call for only one city/county, to minimize his/her transportation costs, but municipal governments don't always feel the impact of water costs the way larger state or regional areas do, so they might be reluctant to pay for it.

Although again, maybe I'm wrong when it comes to California....


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:18 PM
horizontal rule
28

18: Heebie has internalized the local patois.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:19 PM
horizontal rule
29

Nice going Tapdancing Jesus!


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:19 PM
horizontal rule
30

Jim Cantore told me that after the recent 5+ inches in three days, DFW is just fine again. And we are greening up something magnificent this week.

Look, the Dallas excess runoff will either make Houston even more humid and sprawlcrazy, or flow into the Gulf killing lobsters and making hurricanes. I honestly don't know what kind of reservoir system Austin has. DFW gets bitched at, but mostly for the costs of reservoir construction, not for stealing or wasting water. And the dogs & I think reservoirs are like very good ideas.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:20 PM
horizontal rule
31

We're already putting cards on tables at restaurants, OR SHOULD BE.

This reminds me: When I was in Santa Cruz, my friend there (who is from the midwest) mentioned when we were eating at a restaurant that you have to order water since it's illegal for the restaurants to provide it automatically. This has been the case in the southwest for so long that I hadn't even thought about it in years (though I do remember when it was instituted), but it was clearly something that struck him as unusual when he moved to California.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:20 PM
horizontal rule
32

Thank you folks.

Megan, I've never lived in a place in Southern California that actually told me what the water consumption was, for my apartment or even my apartment complex... it might be just luck and more people do know their consumption, but what about tap-mounted flow meters (that integrate for total usage)?


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:22 PM
horizontal rule
33

They do a similar thing with home weatherization -- apparently when the government wants to spend money and save energy, they get the most bang for their buck by sending a weatherization crew to someone's house and giving it the works (everything from envelope repair to refrigerator/furnace replacement). There's no reason they couldn't do the same thing with water, except that the program is for saving electricity/gas/oil, not water. The feds probably don't care about water and obviously California doesn't have the money to be fixing people's plumbing these days, so...

But it would probably be pretty effective.


Posted by: neil | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:23 PM
horizontal rule
34

Really, as a green idiot & wastrel, are reservoirs and mm lakes considered bad thinks?

I was gonna write something about how the summer inversion keeps DFW water in DFW, but I don't know how that works.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:25 PM
horizontal rule
35

Way to go, Taunting Jester!

Three weeks and three days more for me.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:27 PM
horizontal rule
36

shouldn't you go elsewhere to celebrate, TJ?
i mean, congratulations!


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:27 PM
horizontal rule
37

36 was my thought too. Are you Becks style yet?


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:28 PM
horizontal rule
38

So, Step 1. Import adorable street urchins to train local urchins in irresistable requests at fire stations.

Staff plumbers/weatherization - I don't think jurisdiction would be a problem. Lots of urban districts have defined boundaries, fixed supplies and direct contact with water users. Honestly, I don't know why it hasn't happened. Districts don't think faucet leaks aggregate into enough water to go after?

Turgid Jacobean, congrats! And you've mentioned a HUGE problem. Virtually all multi-family units are on a single big meter from the main, so we can't finesse billing or conservation incentives in apartment dwellers.

obviously California doesn't have the money to be fixing people's plumbing these days, so...

We do if it would save enough money in water or energy costs.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:32 PM
horizontal rule
39

Oh, TJ! I just realized who you are! TWICE CONGRATS!


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:33 PM
horizontal rule
40

Congratulations, Thieronymus Josch!

We did get a couple inches of rain last week, and I failed to notice that the map hasn't been updated for this week yet. But still.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:43 PM
horizontal rule
41

Knock em dead Blume.

I will be celebrating in a few hours. And thanks again for the congratulations. I am pleased, and very very tired. The sense of relief is huge.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:50 PM
horizontal rule
42

Hooray for Tinkerbell Juggernaut!


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:52 PM
horizontal rule
43

DOCTOR Tinkerbell Juggernaut!


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:53 PM
horizontal rule
44

That is incredibly weird. Now that I have it I feel like I should hide it. I did not realize that...


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:56 PM
horizontal rule
45

Doctor Tinkerbell Juggernaut-Firm!


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:57 PM
horizontal rule
46

I can't believe I forgot weatherization. There is a big chunk in the Recovery Act for "energy auditor" and other such green jobs. Nonprofits like this one have been doing that work for 20+ years -- basically sending well-trained amateurs into poor/elderly people's homes and helping them to figure out how to better insulate, paint roofs white, etc.

So yeah, plenty of precedent for having people on staff to go out into the community and help individual homeowners save energy/water. The only difference is that the programs I know of are all nonprofit-run, not municipal staff.

(Also: Congratulations, TJ!)


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 4:59 PM
horizontal rule
47

Three weeks and three days more for me.

Me too!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:00 PM
horizontal rule
48

I just wanted to say "Me too!" It's really four weeks.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:01 PM
horizontal rule
49

I feel compelled to note that I just received a passionate environmental message about the need to oppose municipal regulations on PVC piping. Talk about your double-edged swords.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled celebrating.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:03 PM
horizontal rule
50

48 so far as you know!( Unless you induce, I suppose.)


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:03 PM
horizontal rule
51

50: Very true. I realized the other day that I really need to get my final exams written early, in case I don't make it that far.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:05 PM
horizontal rule
52

48.1: Me too!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:05 PM
horizontal rule
53

Me neither!


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:06 PM
horizontal rule
54

Way to go, Tumid Javelina!

Isn't the water-in-restaurants rule mostly symbolic? I can't imagine that it amounts to a hill of beans quantitatively.

I tend to be somewhat favorable to pricing solutions to conservation problems. I haven't owned or had use of a car for about 38 years and very seldom travel by air or train either, which makes me a hero of immobility and fuel conservation, but if I can't have a long, very hot, full tub bath almost every day I'm very unhappy.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:15 PM
horizontal rule
55

Incidentally, I used very hot full-tub baths as a substitute for home heating for two winters recently. It works quite well down to about 40 degrees F: -- it's a Japanese practice.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:17 PM
horizontal rule
56

54.2: The water served in glasses is pretty trivial. Washing all the glasses, included the ones that weren't touched, does add up.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:18 PM
horizontal rule
57

Still sounds trivial.

It reminds me of the Oregon Bottle Bill, which people loved because a.) it was a sin tax (beer and pop bottles but not wine: that would be populist); and b.) it reduced litter and was super nimby-friendly. On the other hand, the conservation of aluminum is commercially viable, and the conservation of silica sand is of marginal importance, and glass bottles are non-toxic (and provide micro-environments for many species, though of course people think that these must be BAD species), and (th clincher) glass bottles aren't reused, or even melted down to make new bottles. They're just crushed and used to make some kind of gravel-type thingy.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:23 PM
horizontal rule
58

And I forgot c.) it allowed people to believe that they were doing something even though they really weren't.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:24 PM
horizontal rule
59

bob's comments are more interesting if you read "DFW" as "David Foster Wallace."


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:26 PM
horizontal rule
60

56 is what I've heard as well, and while it does still sound trivial, my impression is that if you actually run the numbers it adds up to quite a bit.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:27 PM
horizontal rule
61

also, congratulations Turncoat Jellybean!


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:30 PM
horizontal rule
62

More congrats to the Thomistic Jansenist!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:38 PM
horizontal rule
63

Yeah, big ups Turducken Jain.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:43 PM
horizontal rule
64

Turducken Jain. This is sublime.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 5:48 PM
horizontal rule
65

Congratulations, Turgid!

I am somewhat guiltily attached to my dishwasher. So much so that I would probably be willing to bathe/shower less frequently if it came to that (if some sort of water rationing came in, say) in order to keep running the machine every few days. It is a waste of energy, of course.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 6:00 PM
horizontal rule
66

Congratulations, Jean de Tourettes.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 6:03 PM
horizontal rule
67

Congratulations, Truculent Jerrican!


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 6:10 PM
horizontal rule
68

33: No Jeavons paradox, more use of heating fuel because it does the buyers more good? (I wouldn't necc. disapprove, even so.)

My elderly portable dishwasher actually probably uses less water than I'd use to wash a full load; one can tell if one plugs the sink it drains into and watches carefully. Also, *robots doing my dishes!* I love these re-entries to the twentieth century.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 6:12 PM
horizontal rule
69

To save water, I wear my clothes into the dishwasher.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 6:19 PM
horizontal rule
70

I just knew people would come up with yet another reason not to soak the rich.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 6:20 PM
horizontal rule
71

Congratulations TANGO JULIET!


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 6:37 PM
horizontal rule
72

69. You have corrupted the teachings of Ogged (PBUH, etc.).


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 6:41 PM
horizontal rule
73

65: It is my understanding that if you run your dishwasher when it is full, it actually is far more water-efficient (if not energy efficient) than washing by hand.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 6:53 PM
horizontal rule
74

Oh, and congrats, TJ!


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 6:54 PM
horizontal rule
75

I haven't read the whole thread, but I wanted to say fuck you Tempus Jufit. Happiness is a zero-sum game, and now there's less for the rest of us.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 7:12 PM
horizontal rule
76

Congratulations, TJ. Don't mind Walt; you can make up for this by enforcing the celibacy of a couple thousand mice.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 7:21 PM
horizontal rule
77

I do look at the rinse-water suspiciously, wondering if it isn't perhaps recycled even more than I would like.

Congratulations, Tertiary Jurassic.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 7:23 PM
horizontal rule
78

Do kids from TX know "If it's yellow, let it mellow..."?

And, of course, congratulations to Traitor Jews.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 7:40 PM
horizontal rule
79

Congratulations Thistle Jacket!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 7:48 PM
horizontal rule
80

78: Especially now that I pee every 15 minutes, I find this is only practical.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 7:48 PM
horizontal rule
81

Only practical? Not magical??


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 7:54 PM
horizontal rule
82

"If it's yellow, let it mellow..."?

Oh yah right. Gross, dude. I suppose you don't shower twice a day either.

Congratulations, Thumb-on-the-Joystick!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 7:56 PM
horizontal rule
83

Only practical? Not magical??

Do you find not flushing to be magical? I know someone who once recommended the kiddie pool for people like you.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 7:59 PM
horizontal rule
84

83: Are you challenging me to a rap battle? Is that what you're doing?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:01 PM
horizontal rule
85

I would be hopelessly outclassed. But feel free to demonstrate your mad skillz.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:05 PM
horizontal rule
86

Heebie, don't worry about the environment too much in your current condition. After all, you're flushing for two!


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:05 PM
horizontal rule
87

85: Nah, I might upset Emerson. He's very sensitive lately.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:06 PM
horizontal rule
88

86: It did occur to me that if Texas did one of those mandatory reductions in water usage over your previous year's use, we could get charged a lot of money, because I'm sure we're about to be running the washing machine a ton more. Especially if we actually get the hang of this cloth diaper thing I've been hearing so much about.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:08 PM
horizontal rule
89

88: I thought you were supposed to hand-wash the cloth diapers.

But no, seriously, it does seem to be the case that raising children burdens the environment and all like that. Don't know what to say.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:15 PM
horizontal rule
90

I actually love washing dishes by hand, have since I was a kid, and do a sink every day. I start with a inch of water and lots of soap, and wash & rinse in the same sink under a trickle or small flow. I can usually finish before the wet sink fills.

Is this the good way?

The dishwasher is broken, but I always hated it. Noisy, hot, have to rinse and even scrub dishes before you put them in, have to put away all the clean dishes at once or risk mixing clean and dirty.

Downside is chipped dishware. Bad.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:17 PM
horizontal rule
91

87: must be rush week.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:18 PM
horizontal rule
92

Congrats, Trismegistus Januarius.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:21 PM
horizontal rule
93

Aka Transsexual Japery.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:22 PM
horizontal rule
94

it does seem to be the case that raising children burdens the environment and all like that.

Well, just the existence and maintenance of human beings at a high material standard of living places serious burdens on the environment, I think. But it's wrong, and misleading, I believe, to single out childcare as somehow peculiarly burdensome.

When I was a kid, I used to help out my mum with the diapers. Machine-washed, but first flushed out in the toilet and then soaked in a pail. My mother taught me how to swish out the nasties through a back-and-forth motion in the toilet bowl, and also how to place your thumb behind the diaper pin just so, so that, if you missed your target and somebody got jabbed with a pin, it would be you instead of the baby. This was back in the day when Canadia was still a backward country, of course, and disposable diapers were still considered an extravagant (but enviable!) American novelty item.

Cloth diapers are great if that's where you want to go, but no way can anyone convince me that it's not a lot of work to reject the convenience of disposables. Imho, washing diapers is a real drudgery.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:32 PM
horizontal rule
95

I start with a inch of water and lots of soap, and wash & rinse in the same sink under a trickle or small flow. I can usually finish before the wet sink fills.

My roommate takes this approach, and several years ago when we were subletting with a friend of mine, the friend said, "Yo, who's doing the dishes like this? Because there's freakin' smegma still left on the dishes, okay?"

I chose to pass on this remark, and just said, "Talk to roommate." It's not clear to me whether they ever did discuss it.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:32 PM
horizontal rule
96

Especially if we actually get the hang of this cloth diaper thing I've been hearing so much about.

Do it: so worth it, and surprisingly easy.

And, congratulations, Tom 'n' Jerry.


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:34 PM
horizontal rule
97

96: By "hearing about" I mean "reading your blog".


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:36 PM
horizontal rule
98

so worth it
Is this one of those vaguely creepy parent things I'm not supposed to understand, or is it just cheaper?


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:36 PM
horizontal rule
99

97: Sweet! Another convert.

98: It's cheaper. I also maintain it's nicer for your (meaning my) baby's delicate personal region.


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:39 PM
horizontal rule
100

I feel like disposable diapers have been entirely worth it, but mrh and I may price shit-handling at different rates.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:40 PM
horizontal rule
101

99.2: I guess it might not be cheaper if you have to pay a premium for water usage, so -- conundrum.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:45 PM
horizontal rule
102

I should say that my thoughts on the awesomeness of cloth diapers may evolve once we enter the solid food (and solid poop) phase. At this point, I don't think I handle any more shit than your average disposable-diaper-using parent.


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:46 PM
horizontal rule
103

nicer for your (meaning my) baby's delicate personal region

Whereas I maintain you gotta toughen 'em up before you send your kids out into the world to use 'em.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:47 PM
horizontal rule
104

Mazl tov, tug job.

I have forwarded the municipal plumber idea to my public-policy-making friends.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:48 PM
horizontal rule
105

103: Look, you're entering a world of plastics, so get used to it!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:49 PM
horizontal rule
106

God knows I've been handling it too damn much recently. Two nights in a row, Cassidy's taken a massive crap in the tub while she's sitting in it with Noah.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:50 PM
horizontal rule
107

106: cool, it's like that baby sign language they use.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:52 PM
horizontal rule
108

Wear cotton underpants around all day one day, and plastic underpants around all day the next, and tell me which you prefer, Apostropher.

Also, at least in our experience, cloth diapers just work a whole hell of a lot better, especially on the young ones with the explosive poops. We almost dread going anywhere on vacation (when we're forced to use disposables), because damn near every poop was inevitably a giant blow out. This almost never happens with cloth.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:53 PM
horizontal rule
109

106: For god's sake, don't remind either of them of that as they grow up. You'll just embarrass them both, Dad.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:53 PM
horizontal rule
110

106: That sounds pleasant for precisely no one. I'm very grateful the twins have limited their bath time excretions to delicate arcs of urine.

On the other hand, Julian's been constipated for over a week, so in addition to all of the grunting, we get to obsess over the color and consistency of each bowel movement. I plan to take my revenge by bringing it up as often as possible once he's old enough to be embarrassed.


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:55 PM
horizontal rule
111

108 is true! Every one of our disgusting poopsplosions has happened in a disposable.


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:57 PM
horizontal rule
112

102: solid poop: no big deal at all. Just dump it in the toilet. (Which is what you're supposed to be doing with poopy disposable diapers anyway, if you care about not fucking up the environment, so it's not actually any more poop-handling.) The messy solid-food diarrhea-poops really are a giant bitch, though. Sorry, there's just no way put a positive spin on it.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:58 PM
horizontal rule
113

tell me which you prefer, Apostropher

I might not be representative of the population at large.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 8:59 PM
horizontal rule
114

Why is the link in 112 not showing up as a link unless you scroll over the text?


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 9:00 PM
horizontal rule
115

You hreh'ed instead of href'ing. All better.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 9:01 PM
horizontal rule
116

Wait, the link in 112 isn't working at all, is it? It was supposed to be this. (Although that was honestly just the first thing I pulled up with a quick google search.)


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 9:02 PM
horizontal rule
117

God knows I've been handling it too damn much recently. Two nights in a row, Cassidy's taken a massive crap in the tub while she's sitting in it with Noah.

My sister did that in 1952. She seemed so darn pleased with herself, too. I've never quite forgiven her.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 9:03 PM
horizontal rule
118

The messy solid-food diarrhea-poops really are a giant bitch, though. Sorry, there's just no way put a positive spin on it.

Maybe use two hands?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 9:03 PM
horizontal rule
119

106: I thought the prevailing wisdom was that you can just mash it up real good with your feet; it'll go right down the drain.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 9:08 PM
horizontal rule
120

119: That only works in the dishwasher.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 9:17 PM
horizontal rule
121

Christ, mrh, you guys are washing all of your diapers? And it's easy? Good Lord. We used a diaper service, which wasn't cheap, but I don't know how we'd have survived otherwise.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 9:26 PM
horizontal rule
122

If you're OK with the terrible effects of toxic chemicals on tender skin, endocrine systems, nervous systems, etc., diaper services are absolutely the way to go.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 03-17-09 10:04 PM
horizontal rule
123

Cloth diapers + washing machine = easy as pie. Hell, we even hung ours on a line *in Seattle* bc the sun bleaches and kills germs blah blah. I have no idea why people think it's such a big deal.


Posted by: Bitchphd | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 12:36 AM
horizontal rule
124

I've begun a regimen of crapping into diapers in preparation for possible future progeny. It's fucking wizard cocksucker amazing.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 12:49 AM
horizontal rule
125

123: as if there were sun in Seattle.

But sunlight is a wonderful disinfectant, and cheap too.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 12:50 AM
horizontal rule
126

Because germs are lowlifes, creatures of the night, and decadents, and they work graveyard.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 12:52 AM
horizontal rule
127

124: Welcome to Unfogged, Senator. Someone will be along with your fruit basket shortly.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 12:54 AM
horizontal rule
128

123: Because first you have to get the poop off, and then you have to spend every fucking waking hour washing hundreds of goddamn diapers. We tried, but there was just no way it was going to happen.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 12:55 AM
horizontal rule
129

For getting the crap off - use nappy liners. Either flushable ones so you can just chuck the whole thing down the toilet, or fleece ones are good because it usually comes off really easily. Though there are probably new technologies out since I stopped using them.

I only started using cloth nappies after I started using reusable sanpro and realised *I* felt far far better than with disposable sanpro. And then couldn't bring myself to make my babies use the paper and plastic stuff.

Other pros - it's cheaper (unless you get carried away with the cuteness), it's much cuter, and there is definitely something nice about a washing line of nappies. (I have found over this last year that even my next door neighbour's nappies make me smile. Just shoot me now.)


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 2:59 AM
horizontal rule
130

Jesus understands.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 5:25 AM
horizontal rule
131

He's got twins, he's excused. (mrh is superdad, I guess. Or is living with superwoman.) You have no excuse. Me neither - I didn't start experimenting with cloth until #2 was about a year, and didn't use cloth full-time until #3 was about 4 months old.

So basically heebs, if it turns out to feel like a huge palaver, leave it for a while. But if it fits into your routine ok, you're sorted. Don't fret about buying them and not using them - seeing as you're planning another one or two, you'll still save money.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 5:34 AM
horizontal rule
132

130 works equally well with 128 and 129.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 5:49 AM
horizontal rule
133

If you guys wanted to chime in with suggestions for what your district could do to get you to Change Your Ways, there's a chance my governor would read that in two weeks.

Although Posh Deep Blue Suburb is in a generally water-rich area, it is surprisingly proactive about water conservation. Among the practices the city fathers parents have adopted:

Differentiated water rates. PDBS differentiates water rates in two respects: (1) the per-gallon charge is lower for the first X gallons per household, rising sharply once household usage crosses a certain threshold; (2) water is dearer in the summer than in winter. This is a variant of "raise rates", of course, but it helps to mitigate the adverse distributional impacts.

Regulate landscape watering infrastructure. PDBS requires a municipal permit to install a sprinkler system. Among other conditions: the system has to be equipped with a moisture sensor and automatic cutoff function (so that the sprinkler doesn't go on while it's raining, for example); it has to be inspected at regular intervals, and it has to use the most efficient sprinkling technologies.

Subsidize rainwater collection systems. For a nominal fee, the public works department will bring a rain collection barrel to your house and attach it to your downspout, whence you can use the collected rainwater to water your plants.

Subsidize front-loading laundry machines. Technically, PDBS doesn't do this. But PDBS has a municipal power utility that gives cash rebates for the purchase of energystar appliances, which amounts to the same thing.

Plant municipal green areas with drought-resistant grass species. The local parks and playgrounds are planted with hardy grass varieties that don't require irrigation. (The actual impetus was to avoid the use of chemical herbicides, but drought resistance is a serendipitous side benefit.)

Retrofit municipal buildings with low-flow sanitary facilities. PDBS got a reasonably large sum of money from a bequest with the stipulation that it be used to improve the environment. The town parents have dedicated a significant fraction of the funds to retrofit buildings to be both energy and water efficient.

"Dry" street cleaning. Instead of hosing down the streets and flushing the detritus into the storm drains, PDBS uses Dr.-Seuss-like vehicles equipped with rotary sweepers and vacuums.


I'm willing to concede that at least some of PDBS's practices are costly "luxuries" that only work for an affluent community with a healthy tax base. But at least some of them are low-cost interventions that work because the town cares enough to make them a priority.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 6:09 AM
horizontal rule
134

I started using reusable sanpro and realised *I* felt far far better than with disposable sanpro.

I'm pretty sure that I understand what this means, but I've never heard the term sanpro before? DId you have to use a belt or something?


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 6:12 AM
horizontal rule
135

mrh is superdad, I guess. Or is living with superwoman

Mostly the latter, although once she goes back to work I'll be taking over the primary laundry responsibilities. Basically, we do a load of diapers every 1-2 days. Diapers go into the wash when the babies go down for a morning nap. Sometime during the day someone remembers to put them in the dryer. After the babies go to sleep, we fold them (which is easy, since diapers are mostly rectangles). Sometime the next day, we put them away.

I'd go so far as to say it's almost easier with twins. We do so much laundry anyway that another load hardly registers.


Posted by: mrh | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 6:39 AM
horizontal rule
136

121: We did the service as well and liked it, long enough ago that I don't recall the expense, assume it was somewhat dear. As with the disposables, anything willing to yield to gravity, on its own or with shaking or minor nudging, went into the toilet.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 6:55 AM
horizontal rule
137

We do so much laundry anyway

Ain't it the truth, brother.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 7:07 AM
horizontal rule
138

134 - hmmm, assumed sanpro was a fairly standard abbreviation for sanitary protection, but a very quick google gives me a page of British hits, so perhaps it's just us.

No, no belts! The world of cloth pads and mooncups is worth an explore, if you haven't already.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 7:08 AM
horizontal rule
139

The world of cloth pads and mooncups is worth an explore, if you haven't already.

I tried, but I couldn't figure out what I was supposed to do with them.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 7:11 AM
horizontal rule
140

Well, this goes on the end of your cock, and it's for fighting with. Like jousting, but on a smaller scale - very entertaining.

And these are for when you start to notice any faecal incontinence. Not so pleasant, I'm afraid.

HTH!


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 7:35 AM
horizontal rule
141

Congrats Doctor Thelonious Junk.

Right now you are *the* worlds leading expert in whatever the hell your dissertation was about. It's a heady feeling, but the knowledge evaporates fast, and five years from now you'll look at your dissertation and wonder what the hell that motherfucker was smoking 'coz that's some deep shit, man. Weird feeling, that.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 7:42 AM
horizontal rule
142

Belated congratulations, Teabag Joyeuse.


Posted by: Chopper | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 12:16 PM
horizontal rule
143

Thanks for more congratulations...

Before the move we used cloth during the day and disposable over night or when we go out. A nice compromise.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 03-18-09 3:39 PM
horizontal rule