Thursday, March 8, 2012

My take on cloth diapers

"Instead of putting our baby's dirty diapers in the garbage, wouldn't it be much better to put them in our washing machine?"

It was this revelation that really convinced us to use cloth diapers instead of disposable ones. I mean, who doesn't want their baby's poop floating around in the same place where you will later be trying to get your clothes clean? Personally, I can't get enough baby poop inside my washing machine.

Too much?

Okay, so let's face it: no one wants poop in their washing machine. I know that every time I crap my pants I opt to go ahead and throw the dirty drawers in my neighbor's garbage can (Did you hear that? That was the sound of my mother's head exploding after reading that last sentence). However, after you realize that baby poop is much different from adult poop and that a double rinse cycle gets both the diapers and the washing machine free of debris, you clear some head space to appreciate all the benefits of cloth diapers:

1. The cost. I am a cheap person. Eating out for our family means an $8 meal for two at Skyline. Quite simply, cloth diapers are phenomenally cheaper over the long haul. It is a lot more money upfront. However, based on how much we will spend on cloth diapers and wipes and the cheapest deals I found on disposable diapers and wipes, we stand to break even at about the 10 month mark (my wife assures me that my calculation is wildly conservative and we actually broke even at conception). So unless our guy is potty trained before that, we're saving that caish.

2. The environmental impact. Do you know what a week's worth of dirty disposable diapers in your garbage can smells like? If you just gagged when reading this, then yes, yes you do. If not, then I advise that you never try to find out. Do you know that 20% of our nation's landfills are made up of dirty disposable diapers? If that doesn't sound like a lot, I will refer you to a previous post in which I explain why 20% is a lot. If 20% sounds like a statistic I made up on the spot, that's because it is. Besides, I'd rather save room in my garbage can for batteries, tires, styrofoam, and the plastic rings from six-packs of soda without the circles cut.

3. Comfort level. I guess I can't say for sure that my baby likes cloth diapers better than disposables. He's never actually told me he prefers them. The only words the three-month old has managed to say so far are, "Are you sure you're mature enough to be my father?" Other than that it's just a bunch of "ah-goos" and grunts. However, they do just seem so much more comfortable. They are soft and fuzzy and have got to feel good on the toosh (tush? not sure on the spelling). Disposables just seem so cold and plasticy and chemically. I feel like I might as well wrap him up in saran-wrap.

4. Style. I will admit that disposables took a giant leap forward when they came out with those jean-patterned diapers. But they still don't hold a candle to the cuteness of cloth diapers. And for those of you imagining a white cloth and a safety pin, you should know that cloth diapers have made some serious progress in the last fifty years. I would also recommend checking out some other world-changing advancements like the Internet and jeggings.

Those are the top four advantages of cloth diapers as I see them. What did I miss? What crazy moms are offended to the core and want to let me know how they resent my cleverly-disguised and yet all-too-obvious assertion that using disposable diapers is the pure definition of evil? What dads are offended that I assumed only moms would be offended? Can't dads change diapers too? Not if we can help it, right dads (wink, wink)? Who else can I alienate with this post? Well, hey, at least you're not actually letting your kid use a pacifier!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Wisdom trickles

It's been two days since crumbling under first signs of difficulty during my fast. Here are some lessons this not-even-two-day experience taught me.

1. When undertaking a difficult task, it is a good idea to know what to expect. When I got really sick two nights ago, I didn't know I was supposed to feel that way. I was expecting to feel hungry, not to feel like a victim of the plague. Had I known I was supposed to feel plaguish I may have tried to push through. I heard that worked out for people who actually had the plague.

2. When undertaking a difficult task, it is a good idea to have a motivation that lines up with the expected results. My main motivation for the cleanse was curiosity. I wanted to find out what it would be like. I didn't really care as much about the eliminating toxins stuff. Well, I found out that it was hard. And I stopped.

3. When undertaking a difficult task that requires using maple syrup, it is a good idea to refrigerate the maple syrup after opening it.

4. When quitting a difficult task that left you with a dozen lemons, make lemonade. Seriously, that's what I'm going to do.