Gone and Done It

I realize that for now, this blog is a bit scattered. But, so am I. You see, I have all these ideas and CRAZY notions…

I would love this to be an awesome food blog like most of the other blogs you see listed in my blogroll… Or a cool crafting blog where I can show off my latest creations (again, you’ll find some of those in my blogroll)… But, like I said, I’m scattered.

I’ve spent the last two years in Korea NOT trying to learn Korean, but producing, editing, and generally influencing curriculum and text to help Koreans (and other non-native English speakers from various countries in which we also distribute) to learn English. It’s the same story for Jason. We feel bad about this.

I’m also scattered because in LESS than five weeks, we’ll be moving back home. For all my friends and family who read this (generally via FB), you can dance and sing now–we were last night. 🙂

In five almost unbearably long short weeks, we’ll be on our way.

For a long time, like more than two years, Jason and I have talked about the kind of lifestyle we want to lead when we’re back home together and have a place of our own. If nothing else, we want to be sustainable.

This means growing our own fruits and veggies, raising a few chickens, possibly a goat and pig (he wants two piggies). It means using our vehicles less and biking more (we have two nice bikes which will be coming home with us). It means solar panels and graywater. It means CSAs (we know of one for veggies and fruit, while a friend of mine has been seeking out meat and dairy) and buying LOCAL.

Albuquerque Downtown Grower's Market

As we’ve been getting closer and closer to making our future plans a reality, I’ve also been researching GREEN alternatives. I’ve found awesome alternatives for hair dye, shampoo, laundry detergentgrocery bags, and chewing gum (more on this in a moment) as well as deodorant.

Jason has been checking out seed catalogs while I’ve been researching ingredients to find healthful AND sustainable alternatives.

Little known fact about me: I used to be addicted to gum. Not in an unhealthy way, but when I was in high school I would go through a huge pack (like the 24-stick pack) in roughly a day and a half. I still love gum, I just don’t chew nearly as much. I do contribute all that gum chewing to my awesome (I brag) cheekbones:

See? Well defined cheek and jaw bones.

So of course I go and investigate the ingredients of my chewing gum… two words: nasty plastic. Apparently one of the main ingredients in gum (nowadays) is polyvinyl acetate which is a kind of plastic. Pretty much every gum on the market today, has some sort of “gum base” which could include a variety of petroleum products. GAG. As I read this, a look of horror crossed my face that has only slightly subsided since last night. I was distraught after reviewing this and finding my beloved gum to be slightly (putting it nicely) carcinogenic.

Holy crap Batman! Jason was on it though and he found a link to Glee Gum (the only gum not using the synthetic rubber). Relief.

What does all this mean? In a nutshell, it means you, the consumer, need to be a little more proactive in your search for information. Not only am I 100% off gum (except Glee when I get home), but it’s got me thinking about other things. Like: how bad are microwaves and do you really need your refrigerator?

**Editor’s note** I did find a gum manufacturer that does NOT include petroleum products in their gum. You can find them here. I actually contacted them and was told as such.

6 thoughts on “Gone and Done It”

  1. Hi Tamara. I’m really, really sorry to burst your happy chewing gum bubble, but Glee Gum does contain synthetic materials in the gum base. Here is what it says in their FAQ:

    “What is gum base?
    Gum base is the indigestible part of the gum that gives it a chewy texture. It is the part of the gum that you discard after chewing. Most gum base is made of entirely synthetic materials. Glee Gum is the only gum made in North America with a gum base that contains chicle (natural latex of the Manilkara zapota, known as the sapodilla tree) and a mix of natural and synthetic materials. The exact formula is (unfortunately!) confidential. It is safe to chew, but, like all chewing gum, we don’t recommend that you swallow!”

    Notice it says “A mix of natural and synthetic materials.”

    When I called Glee Gum in January 2010 for my chewing gum post, the owner said that their gum does indeed contain polyvinyl acetate. I have not heard back whether or not anything has changed since then. If you find out otherwise, I would love to know.

      1. I got all excited… until I realized they only sell it in the U.K. right now… Well, at least we know it exists. I’ll contact the company and see if they have plans for anywhere else.

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