Friday, October 21, 2011

Occupied: The First Week

Calvin gets it...

One thing about starting something new is that well, it's new.  And while new is often Shiny! and Bright! and Awesome!,  it's often also surprising and odd and unfamiliar.  There is the new car smell, tinged with the disappointment of a ding on the bumper.

There is much that is Shiny! and Bright! and Awesome! about Occupy Me, The First Week.  In five days, I've had almost 600 page views.  To be honest, I'm not altogether sure what that means, but it seems like a lot of views of the five pages that make up this blog.

And then there are the tiny steps: -I've had a friend let me know she's moving all her coffee meetings to small, independently-owned establishment.  Several people have said they too are on their way to a more cash-only way of living.  Neighbours have decided to host a locally-sourced dinner tomorrow night and all I have to do is source the wine part and a babysitter!  This is too much goodness for words.  Add the general interest and warm support of my favourite people who have taken a minute to say they like thinking in this general direction, and really, this can't be anything but Shiny! and Bright! and Awesome!


Except for the parts where I'm kind of failing already.  While we've only done debit this week, we haven't moved all the way to cash yet. While we want to support local, small business, tires are almost 40% more expensive here in Canada and we think we'll be driving south to replace our nearly-bald set. At Costco.


The good news is that my not-quite-there-yet brings with it lots of grace and compassion.  I stand here with  all of us who truly, deeply want to undermine a system that is based on injustice and greed and all manner of wrong-doing that benefits the very few at the expense of all the rest.  I stand here not doing enough, but doing more than I did a week ago and have great faith that a tiny step can be fish'd and loave'd into great change.

If you have taken your own tiny step, I hope you'll find a way to let me know so that I can keep track.  One step you might consider is forwarding a link to the blog to people you think might be willing to take their own tiny step.  One of the magics of the interwebs is its power to multiply - one tiny step forward could help us get to hint o' great change.


  1. What you are doing here - prompting a call to action in a tangible, passionate, I can do this kind of way - modeled with honesty and transparency - what's not to be inspired by?

    You've given me some food for thought this week. I am a (mostly) cash only spender - but for selfish reasons - it keeps my student budget on track and ensures I stay within my means. I need to give it more thought - I've been missing the whole "how my spending habits impact others" and I need to think about that too - especially in where I shop.

    My latest call to action is chocolate. My favorite vice, but I was ignorant far too long about what children went through to make sure my M&M's were affordable. No more ... fair trade or none. No matter how good those post Halloween sales are.

    On a more general note my friend - I think that making the life long, life altering choices that we are talking about is a marathon, not a sprint. None of us can do it all - and definitely not all at once. That's not an excuse to make excuses, but rather an acknowledgement that in the midst of attempting to change a culture, we still have to live in the old one. And it's messy.

    Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm. ~Winston Churchill

    I think keeping up that enthusiasm - beyond the Shiny! Bright! New! - that's where the real battle is won or lost.

  2. Jo, thank you for this encouragement. You are one of my favourite examples of sticking out something past the Shiny! Bright! New! stage. Going failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm may have to be embroidered on one of my throw cushions... that is a just-right reminder for me. Thank you friend.

  3. What an interesting blog A! I've been slowly trying to live my life like this in the past few years as well. Maybe its because I'm a "person who makes things" but I try to only buy hand made stuff when I can, and eat/drink at local joints rather than been gross chains. I can't always stick to these rules, but just trying is half the battle.

  4. Oops, meant to say "BIG, gross chains" ie. Red Robin, Wal-mart etc...