Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Requested: your thoughts, please

I have a question.

Trade places for a minute and pretend you're me. You've given up China for 365 days because you can't stand how many jobs have been outsourced. You want to protest the condition of Chinese factory workers. You're tired of everything you pick up having the "Made in China" stamp. And darn it, China is a run by a dictator...and you're sick of supporting him with every Chinese purchase you've ever made.

You want to support local businesses. But if the a majority of their merchandise is made in China, what do you do? Should you support your neighbor - and China - by making a purchase, or take a walk?

Obviously, it's not the first time I've noticed that local shops carry an awful lot of Chinese games, teapots, dresses, robes, books (yep, BOOKS. Crazy.), picture frames, wine openers, shoes, etc. etc. and etc. But we went into a LOT of shops that day (what can I say? Drew and I were wiling away several enjoyable hours by exploring some really neat stores when this dilemma presented itself to me).

I don't have the answer.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

There's something about the color blue...

I learned something new today. Don't cross an entire brand off your list just because the brown sneaker you picked up was made in China.

After scouring Discount Shoes and Dillards, Drew and I took off walking towards Tops for Shoes today. I'm on year three of wearing my very awesome (but ready to be retired) purple Rocket Dogs. It was time for some new sneakers. I had tried Discount Shoes because they carry hundreds of name-brand styles for less (They gotta have SOMETHING not made in China, right?) and Dillards because I had found my oh-so-sexy black wedges there (made in Brazil, thank you very much!). Sadly, both stores turned out to be complete successes in in the m.i.c. department (read: I walked out with no sneakers).

Tops is a local store, packed with hundreds of shoes. They should have something, I thought reasonably to myself. Twenty minutes later, I had found one, rather ugly pair that wasn't made in China. Not only was it unattractive, but it was $74 - way more then I had planned on spending. I was trudging out the door, weighed down by yet another failure, when the rack of Converses caught my eye. Again.

"No," I told myself, "Don't even bother. You know they're made in China." I DID know...or at least, thought I did. I had picked up a Converse at least two or three times already, only to see the same little phrase stamped on the tongue of each shoe.

As I was coaching myself, however, Drew was reaching for a sneaker. Fine, I thought. Two can play this game. I'll reach for a sneaker too. Crikey, it was made in Indonesia! "Maybe it's a leftover shoe that's been there for a while," Drew said. "They may all be made in China now." Darn those logical people. He began peeling back the tongues on several other pairs.

"Hey, this one's from Indonesia too," he said, gesturing to a white Converse.

"I guess I'll go upstairs and try the blue one on," I said, my heart pounding fifty miles per minute. Was I actually going to walk out of here with sneakers? Turns out the blue sneakers WERE all made in Indonesia - thank God for miracles! I've never owned a pair of Converses before, but have always wanted to. Double miracle whammy!

Next time you pick something up with the m.i.c. label, CHECK THE OTHER COLORS. While the brown sneaker, unfortunately, is touting the 'ol red and white national colors, the blue one may not be.


Sunday, November 7, 2010

Fall Creek

Our spectacular campsite! We pulled in after dark and set up to the bright glare of the Saturn's headlights.

These two pictures are for the day the Saturn goes on sale. Or maybe I just thought the old girl makes a bee-yoo-ti-ful model. Either way, she's strutting her stuff.

Ben - never far from his beloved iPhone. ;)

Apparently the end of October is not a popular time to go camping (did I mention that Friday ushered in terrific gusts of wind and chilly temperatures?), because there was not a single other camper there. In other words, we got our pick of a campsite!