It is almost the New Year!  How many people make a New Year’s resolution, and then a few months later realize how impossible it is to keep the resolution?  I know that I do.  I am always eager to start the new year off right, so I promise to exercise more, eat less, spend more time with my family, spend more time alone, quit bad habits, get more organized, …  We all know the routine, but SERIOUSLY how many of us keep our promises? 

This year, I plan to do something a little different.  I plan to consume more wisely.  I am not talking about dieting (although I am always in needJ). I am talking about consumption of goods and products.  I just saw an incredible 20-minute video, “The Story of Stuff.”  thanks to my friend, Jabiz who is my guru of conscientious living!   This short video follows our system of extraction, production, distribution, consumption, and disposal of “stuff” that we use in our everyday lives.   

Go to the website and check it out.  You will learn a few things, laugh at a few things and maybe even get angry and decide to change a few things.  There are some easy ideas to get started on changing our ways of consuming and disposing of our stuff.   

Last week I was shopping and I thought of how great it was to see some new American products in the stores here in Kuala Lumpur!  Hooray for Cheez-Its, Cheerios and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups!  I can finally buy some familiar products!  Wow, they were imported all the way from the USA!  How great is that?  Wait a minute…  I have survived for almost 4 years without these products.  What was the cost of getting those products half way around the world?  Is it worth it so that I can consume a box of Cheez-Its, that frankly, I don’t need?  After watching “The Story of Stuff”, I began to imagine how much fuel was used to ship, the low-cost labor, the boxes and containers, the waste and pollution … I have been quite happy with the crackers and snacks that I buy in the night market.  These do not have boxes, these were not flown or sailed half way around the world and they were being sold by a local man supporting his family that I know and see every week.  

American strawberries in the large grocery stores cost RM26. for a small container (US $7.00).  I am too cheap to pay that when I can buy the same size container of local strawberries for RM4. (US $1.10) So, what is the real cost of shipping those strawberries half way around the world. The price difference is $5.90, but the cost to the Earth and its resources, the cost to families who are forced to work for cheap wages, the pollution and waste of buying these products is immeasurable. After watching this video, I am a little smarter and a lot wiser.  I will pay more attention to the items that I purchase, consume and dispose of in the year 2008.  I never really gave a thought to the “real” cost of products until I saw, “The Story of Stuff.”  Watch it and you may modify your New Year’s resolution too! 

(But right now what should I do with my box of Cheez-Its? I already bought them last week?!  I can’t waste them right?  Tomorrow is the New Year!  J)



  1. December 31, 2007 at 9:59 am

    I don’t know about guru, I am currently stuck in the middle of a guilt inspired panic attack on my life and how I live it. (I have had about ten blog posts I need to right, but I am inert and unable to write.) I am realizing that no matter how hard we try we stuck in this crazy system that makes it very difficult to live “right.” But your choices are inspirational, and contrary to what you mya think, I am always in need of inspiration. The idea that we are not alone is a very positive push in the right direction.

    We need to educate and inspire each other….Kudos to you and good luck.

  2. January 1, 2008 at 2:01 pm

    I left a comment, but it didn’t show. Is it being moderated?

  3. globalanni said,

    February 9, 2008 at 3:04 am


    Ya, sorry, your comments went to spam for some reason. No reason for guilt attack! You are an amazing father and husband, you are a gifter writer and teacher, a talented musician and a wonderful, inspiring person! Sometimes the best way to change the world is to inspire by living the best that YOU can in your restricted “Sphere of Influence.” 🙂

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