Have you ever seen those survival guy shows? Not Survivor, but the type of show where a guy (it's always a man, women aren't this intentionally stupid) goes into an inhospitable environment to humans, like a jungle, a desert, or an outdoor music festival, then finds his way out They even film themselves, so there's no suggestion of an off-camera crew sharing turkey subs from the catering table. I for one would like to see the reverse concept every episode. Show me how to get into a five star hotel or top-rated restaurant using only my wits and a cup of my own pee.
I will admit, however, a certain appeal to the survivor guy show. It's amazing to see how far one can get without any stuff. It flies in the face of our always-connected age. I envy that freedom from things (that said, don't take away any of my shit). I was without a cell phone for so long, and now Dr. Jon and I split one and I hate when it's not in my possession. At first I thought I'd never use it, or only for emergencies, and now I wish I could use it more. There are, for instance, ways to connect to Facebook and Twitter on this phone, but we don't have a data plan and so we can't and it TEARS ME UP INSIDE! The appeal of such a concept (Facebook and Twitter on a phone) is that multiple functions are served from one device. Like the survival guy who uses a long stick to spear fish and retrieve Frisbees from tall treetops, I love the idea of more than one use for a simple thing.
Dream: Find new uses for everyday objects.
Goal: Achievable. In this economy, one can't afford to waste money on single-purpose items anymore. Most folks will rinse out a jelly jar and use it anew to store thumbtacks, for instance, or turn their expired Jello into a marital aid. It helps one save money and feel resourceful; what's wrong with that?
Plan: List all the tips and tricks I have learned to reuse everyday items, like:
No one buys cds anymore, but we all have those accordion folders where we used to store them. Placing processed cheese slices in there means you and your friends will always have snacks for cross-country roadtrips. For example, on a hot August day, you could reach for your accordion and say to your travelling companions, "Have you heard the latest single from..." (open case) "Kraft? KRAFT SINGLES!" and everyone will laugh and chow down.
New televisions on the market are now often longer than they are wide, making them the perfect sledding surface. Why waste money on a toboggan when you can glide down a snowy hill in style on a television? Strap yourself in nice and tight with the attached power cord and HDMI cables!
Has your infant grown into an ungrateful child? Don't throw out that baby monitor! Turn it into a walkie-talkie you and your spouse can use to grieve lost innocence from separate rooms.
A garlic press makes a fantastic pill crusher enabling you to top any food with psychotropic medication your dinner guests will consume, unawares. Turn your next dinner party into an all-night freakout.
Have a skeleton in your closet? Don't come clean! Use it to retain the shape of your sweaters.
Put a twist of citrus in your colas and cocktails with a quick spritz of Lemon Pledge.
Poop in the tub
Has your messenger bag gone out of style? Fill it with ball-bearings, place it atop the stairwell of an apartment complex, and tip it over as you pull the fire alarm for a fun afternoon.
No ice cubes for your next party? No problem! Swipe some stones from your pretentious neighbour's "garden pathway" in the dead of winter. They keep your drinks cold and don't water them down.
Merchandise in support of Mitt Romney's 2012 presidential campaign makes excellent toilet paper.
Retain the shape of your boots by paying a person who is roughly your size to stand in them for you while you're not wearing them.
This holiday season, we want to save money and time where we can. So surprise Mom with a Lady Shick that also peels potatoes, and keep Dad a fiend on the fairway with a 9-iron that's also a kneecap-crusher. We live in such abundance, we cannot only survive but thrive if we learn to create more from the more we already have, lest we discard our blessings like a cup of our own pee.