Easter's around the corner, and so the issue of Easter eggs is on my mind. This is quite apart from the ethics of chocolate, which you can read about in Elaine's blog.
For the last few years, my kids have come back from our family Easter get together with a swag of Easter eggs from their aunts and uncles as well as their grandparents. That's after they receive one from me and Action Man. These eggs get put in the pantry, and eaten little by little until at last they are forgotten and then finally chucked out.
The waste of money and resources has started to bother me over the last few years. So a few weeks ago I decided to lobby my three brothers for their families not to exchange Easter eggs with our family. Here's how that went:
Brother Number 1: His wife had already bought Easter Eggs for our kids. Sigh. I will need to reciprocate here after all.
Brother Number 2: All for it. Told me he normally chucked out the Easter eggs as soon as he bought them home in past years.
Brother Number 3: Finally agreed to the "no exchange of Easter eggs" policy, but only after calling me the "Easter Grinch".
There it is, one of the major obstacles for those of us who want to consume mindfully. I have to admit, being called the "Easter Grinch" stung, and I wonder how many of us are discouraged in thoughtful consumption simply because we have a horror of being seen to be miserly.
Mindful consumption is great, but what happens to our resolve when we butt up against the expectations of others, especially those others who are close to us who don't yet "Get it?" How can we explain that we aren't being tight, just trying to calibrate our use of resources?
P.S. Please be assured that Brother Number 3 is a great bloke, with an impish sense of humour. There is every chance he was merely taking the mick out of me.