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No Impact Man: An Honest Film April 12, 2010

Posted by nrhatch in Life Balance, Sustainable Living.
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Our celebration of Earth Day 2010 continues!

In No Impact Man: The Documentary, we addressed one New York City family’s efforts to  reduce, reuse, and recycle in order to lessen their carbon footprint on the planet.

In No Impact Man: Pedal Power, we addressed the not-so-earth-friendly neighbors’ complaints about where the family parked the tricycle used to transport their 18-month old daughter around the city.

In No Impact Man: A Dose of Clarity, we addressed the increasing clarity and joy felt by the somewhat-skeptical wife as she participated in the twelve month experiment.

In No Impact Man: No TP?  No Way!, we addressed the inherent value of that modern-day “necessity” . . . toilet paper!

In this post, we’ll address the film’s inherent honesty.

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Unlike Reality TV (which is often nothing more than staged and edited  interactions designed to draw in viewers), No Impact Man is both thought-provoking and honest.

Throughout the film, the central characters acknowledge and share the underlying irony of their efforts with film-goers:

* They joke about the wife’s pre-experiment addiction to shopping and her decision to buy one last pair of boots (with a $1000 price tag) before the shopping moratorium takes effect ~ a decision as self-defeating as eating an entire box of chocolate eclairs the night before starting a diet.

* The cameras keep rolling as environmentalists criticize the family’s excessive zeal, contending that the experiment will hurt, not help, the cause ~ later, a few of these commentators change their minds after meeting with No Impact Man (or his wife) to discuss the project in greater detail.

* When journalists make jokes about the family’s decision to give up toilet paper, husband and wife laugh right along with them, emphasizing that the project is “an experiment” designed to see how much they can do without for 12 short months.

* The film highlights, rather than hides, the inherent inconsistencies between their non-consumer oriented lifestyle and the wife’s continued employment at Business Week.

* And when they “cheat” by borrowing ice made with electricity(!) from a neighbor (to keep items in their camping cooler from spoiling), they do not edit out the neighbor’s reaction to their obvious hypocrisy.

In short, rather than sweeping internal inconsistencies and opposing viewpoints under the rug, the family addresses them head-on, often conceding that their critics are . . . 100% correct!

I’m not all that surprised.

In my experience, honesty comes more easily to those using an internal compass to guide decisions ~ because the opinions of others are not nearly as important as they once seemed to be.

Rather than wasting time and effort defending their “egos” from ridicule and attack, No Impact Man and his family used their energy during the year long experiment to move step by step toward their goal ~ sharing what they learned along the way with us.

Quote:  When you stop hiding who you are, you have more energy to become more fully who you want to be. ~ nrhatch

Don’t Shop . . . Adopt April 12, 2010

Posted by nrhatch in Nature, People.
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Our Celebration of Earth Day 2010 with Green Tips and Ideas continues!

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Thousands of animals languish in shelters waiting to be adopted into a loving home.  

The next time you are “in the market” for a companion animal . . . don’t shop for one, adopt one.

When you are ready to adopt, find your new companion among thousands of wonderful animals listed on:

Pets 911

Or visit your local Humane Shelter and take home a furry friend.

Happy Earth Day 2010!

For other ways to help our furry friends:

Alley Cat Allies

Animal Legal Defense Fund ~ For more than three decades, the Animal Legal Defense Fund has been fighting to protect the lives and advance the interests of animals through the legal system. Founded in 1979 by attorneys active in shaping the emerging field of animal law, ALDF has blazed the trail for stronger enforcement of anti-cruelty laws and more humane treatment of animals in every corner of American life.

A.S.P.C.A ~ The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals

A.S.P.C.A. Shelter Database ~ Are you looking to adopt a pet? Want to volunteer to help homeless animals in your community? Interested in becoming a foster pet parent? Need to report an animal you’ve lost or found, or contact an animal control officer about animal cruelty in your area? Your local shelter can help. Please use our searchable database of nearly 3,000 community SPCAs, humane societies and animal control organizations to find an animal shelter in your area.

The Humane Society of the United States

Adopt, Not Shop Rally on Facebook