Tuesday, May 19, 2009

From Debt to Dirt

photo: Dave Trainer

Our lifestyle today is a lifestyle of debt. Even just sitting in our house, we accrue debt. We turn on lights, we create a debt to the electric company. We get hungry, we have to buy food. We want to do anything, we need health insurance. We live a lifestyle that is very dependent on the social structure. Our lifestyle keeps us tied to this structure by keeping us in debt, all the time.

We know that even as we sleep, the moment we wake up, we will have to pay off this debt we owe society. Subconsciously, this debt slowly erodes our integrity. We don’t realize this though because we’ve grown so accustomed to this lifestyle of debt accrual.

The problem is, is that we have grown unhealthily dependent on our social structure. I imagine a life that is a bit more self-reliant given the means provided by the government. What are those means? I’ve figured out where I stand on that. Check out A Steady Job.

Something I hope to do in the mean time while the government is working itself out is to live a lifestyle that get communities in motion. To get a place in motion, it would make sense to start at the house – we all have a house, that’s a thing that many people have in common - a house.

The house I would want to live in would be one where I wake up to the sound of water running through my house, dripping into the roots of plants I’m growing so I don’t have to buy food from the store. A house where the slightest wind or solar rays are absorbed by modern machines built into my house so that I have no electric bill to pay. And in fact, if the renewable energy produced from my rooftop exceed my overall consumption, I would get money back from my electric company. I imagine going upstairs to my roof and grabbing eggs from my small chicken coop to make breakfast. Then I imagine taking a hot shower, where the water was heated naturally heated by a solar water heater also on my roof. When the water runs down the drain in the shower, I imagine the water… now greywater, running into a filter in my basement that would cleanse all of my greywater into water clean enough for my plants outside. Then, when I poop, instead of flushing X gallons of water back into the public plumbing system, I would throwing a handful of sawdust into my composting toilet. When I fill a 200L barrel with poop and sawdust and lime, I would cap the barrel and let it age for one year, afterwards producing fine fertilizer for my crops.

Even so, if you’re not the blue-collar farmer type of person, there are tremendous improvements that could be done to public utility lines in every city, town and village around the world that could make our lives easier.

I’m anxious to get started.

1 comment:

Robert S said...

I sincerely want to be a part of living in the way that you've described. Let's get our poop into those barrels! For real.