The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is CINCH.
Since few people ride a horse today, the first definition of CINCH: a strap that fastens around the horse’s belly and holds the saddle of a horse, is not so commonly known.
The second meaning, something easily done, is still in use, but other expressions have crowded in. You’ll often hear, “It was a breeze” or “a snap,” “easy-peasy,” “a cakewalk” or “a piece of cake.” Merriam-Webster lists one I haven’t heard, “duck soup.”
I can’t imagine what’s so easy about duck soup, but no one asked me before making it up.
I do know one thing that has become far too easy— I was reading a post about it yesterday. It’s a shame to us in North America just how easy this has become.
Our North American dilemma: What to do with the clothing we’ve worn five-ten times and now it’s SO out of fashion we have to get rid of it?
Oh, that’s a cinch! Donate it to some second hand clothing store like Value Village, Goodwill, or some charity shop. And feel good. “Some needy person…” and all that.
Sad to say, only about 20% of the clothing that’s donated is sold. So what do they do with the 80% of the used clothing they can’t sell? Easy-peasy. Bundle it up and send it to some third-world country. And feel good. “Some needy people…etc.”
According to this article — Click HERE to READ — the U.S. sends away over a billion pounds of used clothing every year, mainly to East Africa. And having been manager of an MCC Thrift Shop myself, I can verify that here in Canada we aren’t doing anything different; what we couldn’t sell we packed up and sent to the local Value Village, or to one woman who collected our stuff, bundled it up, and sent to her African home country.
It’s not hard to grasp that countries like Kenya, Rwanda, and Uganda are feeling SWAMPED and are actually considering banning our stuff. Oh NO! If they won’t take it, we’ll have to make more and bigger landfill sites.
Many voices are raised in protest against pollution and global warming, but we are the recipients of, the ones whose lifestyle is supporting, all this pollution. I read an article a few days ago about the industrial wastes produced in China — and dumped into a huge toxic tailing pond — to make the components for our cell phone and other electronics. Yet the demand continues around the world for newer and better.
I’ve read many articles insisting, or wailing, that “The government needs to do something…” But I’m thinking the answer to cutting back on pollution may be found where we don’t want to look: in our own personal budget. Cinch it a bit. (re: def #1)
Do take time to read this article. I think the writer is giving a good overall picture, plus some practical answers with regard to choosing clothing for long-term wear. And I don’t want to discourage anyone from recycling by making charitable donations; this avenue is definitely worthwhile. Sales generate income for various charitable organizations.
The bigger problem I’m seeing is that we’ve built our world on consuming. Things aren’t built to last. And what would stores do if they couldn’t sell us all that stuff we’re going to throw away? Businesses would go bankrupt; workers would be laid off. Even a short-term dip like production in China slowing down because of the Coronavirus has led US and Canadian banks to drop interest rates in order to stimulate the economy.
How to get back from this point, that is the question. Would a grassroots movement work or wreak havoc? Could each of us do more to stop pollution by buying less new stuff, without throwing the country into a major recession? Important questions to ask. Yet it seems most of us have the vague sense that somehow, someday, our consumption-driven society is going to crash.