It's the ecos versus the retros in subdivisions across the nation, where traditions that were practiced for, say, a thousand years such as line drying the laundry and not dusting the grass with poisons run up against our post-war cultural amnesia and a dated, possibly dangerous aesthetic. This summer, The Daily Green has covered several neighbor on neighbor dust-ups over things like eco-architecture and non-organic lawn services.
It's been voyeuristic fun, in fact, following the exploits of the enviro-savvy as they confront the eco-indifferent on really Archie Bunker kinds of stuff. But this one today is a particular gem. Remember clothes drying? Like on a clothes line with wooden clothes pins? Well, back in the day, say before 1965, everyone in America dried their clothes like this, because, hey, who had a dryer? And, beside it being something sweet and nostalgic and all-American, it also can help you save a few kilowatts and a few bucks and painlessly do your thing for the planet.
If we all just line-dryed one load a week (let's not get carried away here), we'd collectively save enough carbon to...someone do the computation for me, please, I'm a writer...say, save 500 polar bears? A thousand? You get the point. It would be a good green thing, and best of all, it's Perfectly Painless. Or it should be. Today's Wall Street Journal follows the perils of several green home-town heros who are finding that their eco-friendly line-drying is putting some of their neighbors', or most endearingly, their homeowners' associations' knickers in a tumble-dried twist.
That's right, with global warming in the headlines, and climate change happening right in their gardens and golf courses, these geniuses are writing letters and threatening law suits over clothes lines. They say clothes lines look bad. Sort of low-rent. I'll refrain from stating exactly what or who it is who is looking bad here. PS: (I'd link you off to the Wall Street Journal's site so you could read this for yourself, but that site is locked behind its own gated subscription community.)
Online America: Is the Clothesline A Right?
Hang Some Laundry Out to Dry
Project Laundry List: an activist site that compares pictures of laundry on a line and a Katrina-level hurricane and asks "Which is worse for your property value? Do you get it now?"
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