After reading Cafe Media’s “The Greenvergüenza Revolution”, I think I just may fall into this category. Not because of the noted stealing, the untended garbage or owning a shoebox car, no, not anything like that.
When you consider the oft-quoted truism “Necessity is the mother of invention” and you factor in a sinvergüenza’s essentially boundless (nonexistent, really) moral compass, you quickly see why sinvergüenzas have pioneered the green revolution, pushing limits to where others wouldn’t dare.
Hmmm… kinda sounds like me except for the moral compass. Oh yeah, I got plenty of compass. What I mean is that many Latinos like me (the poor kind) were “green” before it was hip to be.
How many of us remember thrift store toys? hand-me-downs from the neighbors? and I don’t care what you think cuz I am wearing my trenzas tied with shoelaces? (ok, that last one might have only been me)
Well as a greenvergüenza, I still shop at any thrift store I spot. I still reuse all kinds of bags and lately have been carrying around an HEB bag as my purse – yes, I do work and no, I don’t care.
If you look at my house, everything has been
2) government auctioned,
3) scratch & dent bought,
5) yard sale bought (especially church rummage sales),
6) Guadalupe, Santa Fe or Hwy 359 flea market find,
7) used goods auctions,
8 ) hand-me-down furniture,
9) thrift stores (Goodwill, Habitat, SalArmy & Serving the Need are my buds),
10) Craigslist bought,
11) classified ad in LMT or Bargain book found,
12) Ebay auction or
13) used to belong to my grandparents.
And, since they can be counted on to place conventional thinking gently to one side (usually right onto the railroad tracks) in favor of the radical, the unusual and the downright weird, it is not surprising that human history is speckled with greenvergüenzas at the extremes of all major trends and movements — including being ecologically conscious.
Imagine my shock when I first came to Laredo and recycling wasn’t a big practice. My staff criticized me for driving what they called a clunker, but I called my “paid in full” ride. I had stepped into status-land with women wearing heels and full make-up to go to class – ‘tan locas.
My greenvergüenza self just kept on being the same, even if myself meant wearing tennis shoes with my formal suits and pantyhose. I was so not going to sacrifice my feet to look taller than what I already am. No way! Comfort was the goal. On my off days, I would wear my tattered Chucks that still have the original old medallion for the laces even though they now have holes on the bottom and sides.
I recycle even though I know the city has problems with some recyclable items. And for sure, I will be at the Earth Day festival this Saturday because us greenvergüenzas no nos rajamos (we don’t give up) and we have to share more green ideas with each other.
By the way, Cafe Magazine is out of Chicago – co-started by a college classmate of mine – the subscription is free and it has some pretty interesting articles. Check it out if you get the chance.