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The Law of Unintended Consequences

© Jen Sorensen

Leaf blowers are one of my pet peeves. They pollute as much as an automobile, make horrible noise, and for what — to push leaves around your yard? I think they should be outlawed, or at the very least converted to battery power.

And speaking of pet peeves, how come everything is scented now? It is getting more and more difficult to find unscented products, even at stores that carry “natural” things.



  1. Don wrote:

    While supposedly in charge of a federal facility with a significant number of federal and civilian folks wandering in and out all day, I attempted to have the scent machines removed from the rest rooms. It’s not news that the organic chemicals they release to fool us into thinking there are no foul scents are at the very least allergens for many people including me and at the worst active carcinogen engines. Try as I might, I never succeeded – the contract required that they be placed in every toilet facility. Someone thought this was so critical to the meeting of the federal mission that we were willing to pay to have them installed and serviced as needed to maintain that “clean air scent.”

    Try and find soap without scents. We sure wouldn’t want to smell like ourselves, now would we (I’m not talking about layers of BO, but rather how one smells after a shower with plain old soap like Ivory). Better to take the example of the French and douse ourselves with eau d’toilette (pardon my French spelling). Oh, and we can’t have neutral smelling shampoos. We’d rather use floral scents that can then attract flies and other assorted flower chasing insects to buzz around our heads when we go outdoors.

    Did I mention the “stuck in the elevator with scented people” problem of cities with elevators (I live in a town of 7000 people with only one elevator so am not forced to tolerate such a predicament unless I leave home). With the right perfume or aftershave I can develop a pretty instantaneous allergic reaction that can take hours to clear afterwards.

    Yup, we have created a society that has to smell what some folks think is pretty. Give me a bit of pine pitch anyday (yeah, I’m a forester, so I have my peculiarities, but I’d never hang a pine tree “air freshener” from my rearview mirror).

    Friday, September 30, 2011 at 12:27 am | Permalink
  2. ebdoug wrote:

    My nurse practioner friend came to visit. Even knowing I have asthma where scents close down my breathing, she wore scent. She and I both were taught in nursing college in the 1960s not to wear scent around patients. I tell people I can’t be around scents, then stand far away from them. They act like I’ve told them they have BO and look offended. To me they have BO.
    I was talking to my recycling screcretary, a light bulb went off in my head. I now knit wipes from left over yarn. 15 stitches, 36 rows. Synthetic or cotton. Cotton is nicer but doesn’t last as long. I soak in bleach, wash in cold water with no soap and hang to dry. I use very, very little toilet paper now. Never did use nose tissue or paper napkins. and no paper towels except when I clean windows because I don’t get a news paper. If the forest goes, it isn’t because of me. I have huge trees I planted 25 years ago.

    Friday, September 30, 2011 at 5:41 am | Permalink
  3. ebdoug wrote:

    wringer washer. The first two years I moved here in 1973, I had no running water so I got a wringer (and of course, hung te clothes) That house burned in 1984. Since then I’ve had an automatic waher until it died.(or is moribund right now) I read about all new made (probably in China) washers, went to more expensive, etc. Noisy, takes an hour to do a load, doesn’t get the clothes clean. I went to who import Wringers from Saudi Arabia for the maids to use. Wow, wow, wow, wow. You don’t wait for a full load of one color. You fill the washer with water and wash whites, wring them, wash mediums, wring them, now the dark. You drain that water (all the while thinking of other things like what you need to do on a project at work) You put in new water and repeat. You have done all your wash in two loads of water. While your clothes are rinsing for the three minutes, you hand your clothes in or out to dry. Since September 7th, I’ve been dazzled to find I had white clothes under all the grime of the automatic. The wringer is very expensive and needs an appliance shut off. One you can plug in and time for ten minutes and three minutes if anyone has any ideas. URL greatly appreciated.

    Friday, September 30, 2011 at 5:51 am | Permalink
  4. Jeff wrote:

    Look at the label for just about everything, and there are chemicals and scents. I’m allergic to some of the things that come in ordinary cleaning products and even deodorant, so my wife and I make our own. It cuts down on the chemicals, makes our home less environmentally damaging, and doesn’t really impact our lives all that much. It’s the same reason we buy local, organic foods.

    It’s amazing how people as a whole don’t seem to understand their impact on the environment, and don’t seem to get how little things make a big difference.

    Friday, September 30, 2011 at 5:55 am | Permalink
  5. Dave TN wrote:

    EBDOUG, I do some electrical work, but for the life of me I can’t quite grasp what you are looking for. Timers are very common but finding one to handle the current reqired is another matter. If you can give me a better idea of what you are needing I might be able to steer you in the right direction. I purchase a large number of electrical components from Grainger, but there are many other sources for parts.

    Friday, September 30, 2011 at 8:29 pm | Permalink
  6. ebdoug wrote:

    Dave TN, I looked everywhere (on line). My washer needs to agitate 10 minutes. I need a timer to turn it off after that time so I don’t have to be at its beck and call. Plug into wall, then plug washer into it, then turn off. You mentioned the power which might be why I can’t find a turn off switch. I was thinking something like what one would use for a coffee maker except that would be a turn on and off. I only want to set it for ten minutes or three and have it cut the power to the washer. I haven’t found it a major inconvenience as four loads of wash are all done in an hour. I’m going to try Harbor Freight. Also my local electric supply company. And thank you for trying for me. Eva

    Saturday, October 1, 2011 at 8:16 am | Permalink
  7. Chelsey wrote:

    I love that people think that when a product says “natural,” that means that it’s good for you. Arsenic is all-natural, but knowing that hardly makes it any better for you.

    Saturday, October 1, 2011 at 2:20 pm | Permalink
  8. Dave TN wrote:

    Eddoug, you might check out this link below, the second item on the list is affordable and rated at 1800 watts, I am assuming your washer is 110 Volt.

    Saturday, October 1, 2011 at 6:54 pm | Permalink
  9. ebdoug wrote:

    dave Tn, Yes. that sounds really good. I’ll go through the catalog. Had heard them advertised but didn’t think of them. May order a variety. Thank you so much for your time and thought. This is wash day. Four loads or so twice a week. I realize I need less clothes this week. No waiting for full loads. More room in my dresser drawers.

    Sunday, October 2, 2011 at 5:57 am | Permalink
  10. Mike wrote:

    I used to hate leaf blowers, then I started doing tree work. Most people want their driveways clean when we are done, and a leaf blower is probably 10 times faster than a broom, and does a better job. That said, I only use it on driveway, and dispersing the pile of sawdust around the stump….

    Monday, October 3, 2011 at 4:36 pm | Permalink