Water in my Ketchup


Some say the green movement is largely associated with White people who drive Priuses and carry their newborns in knapsacks.

But Black people, give yourselves more credit.

I’m going to put it like this:

If you, like me, have ever had to choose between turning off the lights upon exiting a room or going to bed with one less limb, then dammit, you too are green.

And if, like me, you were given a backhand for leaving the water running for too long, then you are no less chartreuse than the next hippie.

In popular media, you are more likely to see T-Pain flossing his new diamond encrusted jewelry, than your average Dante munching on a carrot talking about “This is how to grow your own garden and raise livestock”.

Let us all reflect on how we were raised. *begin*

Now I’m pretty sure you conjured up at least one eye roll from one family member for having used up one too many paper towels just to dry your hands.

Or maybe you recollect a time when you had to drive with all the windows rolled down, just so you could get a better view of others enjoying their Air Conditioning.

In a similar vein, you probably flashed back to the winters where you were told to layer it up. Your family had you going to bed sweating in not only in a onesie, but long johns underneath, a scarf on top, some gloves, and if you had one, a snow suit. All of this just so that you wouldn’t have to turn on the heater.

Speaking of heaters, how about those candles? If not used to heat up a room, they were definitely used as a source of light on many a dark nights.

Oh. How about this one…

Maybe you remember the time when you had to add water to that very last dime of dish washing soap, ketchup and/or shampoo to make it stretch.

Friends, I know our culture is viewed as being thrifty, but when you get underneath the covers, you see that in the midst of our penny-pinching, we did not contribute to the over-consumption of natural resources. We made sure that every sip of milk was drank, and every soap sud squeezed.

So, Black people, and any other people who have ever been scolded, grounded, or just plain smacked for not conserving food and electricity, please get those thoughts out of your heads that the Green movement is not for you.

It has always been yours.

Now go buy a prius so everyone will know.

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7 thoughts on “Water in my Ketchup

  1. Perfectly put.how many times have i been harassed leaving trader joes or whole foods by birkenstock wearing college students ranting about this green movement… energy consumption and etc. I’ve snapped back at them letting them know they need to handle ir cuz im from the islands and we’ve been just fine with nature until they came along. Albeit being in their society we by default contribute at this point, its absolutely ridiculous that they would look to me to donate to a cause they caused.not as a blanket statement about all ‘white’ folks but nearly so. Nowadays i tell them they’re crazy and its their mess. That’s when they wanna use the O word as if saying obama supports this will change my vibe. Contrived philanthropy.self serving ego boostingposturing

  2. Talia you just perfectly described my upbringing. It’s funny but I always thought those tendencies were more an Asian thing than Black thing cuz most of my Black friends growin up had their heaters on BLAST in the winter. I’d always go home and be jealous of them as I piled my layers of sweats, blankets, and gloves on, lol.

    • The similarities between Blacks and Asians are severely slept on. We both seem to enjoy talking really loud to people sitting directly next to us, and cook quality dishes that can unfortunately turn your house (and guts) inside out.

  3. I feel it I have been “Green all my life. Living in a house with my pops will teach you about survival. The closest thing I got to a heater was me cupping my hands together and breathing into them or holding a mug full of hot chocolate. You have to love it, makes you who you are. For some and most humans, makes you appreciate what we take for granted, but what some people on the street would consider a luxury (Heat that is). Watching Captain Planet, only relating to the African brother but still wanting to save Mother earth so every chance I got I was recycling like I was going to get a Planeteer ring.

    The “Green” movement is just a euphemism that means “We are to Late”. White people created that word to feel to feel better about being kind to the earth, which broke people being doing subconsciously since Moses. The earth is dying and we finally take notice when the summers are becoming too hot in some places and colder in other. So lets put up some solar panels and trade in my toxic mobile for a Prius.

    You right though Talia we do it as a means to survive, they do it as a luxury. We just didn’t have a cool name for it just “Broke”. Hahaha

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