This book is a lasting inspiration!
Having lived a life of composting, cooking with leftovers, and avoiding packaged food for years, I didn't think I could learn that much on the subject of re-cycling and reducing waste, and was sceptical about the difference an already eco-concious individual can make to all those depressing stats about humans destroying the planet. But Tracey Smith's Book of Rubbish Ideas was full of facts and snippets I was totally ignorant of, as well as literally hundreds of ideas on how to make easy changes, and alter the way we have become used to living.
I used to feel a bit helpless about the plastic bag issue, so just ignored it and increasingly ended up chucking them in the bin. Now I know that each bag will hang around for up to 1000 (!!!!) years, I feel that each one does make a difference and have stopped being lazy about it.
Consumerism and the resulting waste have already been proven not to make us happy, but in this book, Smith shows how reducing waste and recycling can actually enhance your life and save you huge amounts of money. This is why it is so inspiring. Surely it just makes sense to use a Mooncup, which lasts for 10 years and costs £20, rather than spend a fortune on tampons, which leech chemicals and fibres into our bodies? And as for the countless chemicals we slather on ourselves and our homes, well, they can be replaced with safer, more natural, less expensive, multi-purpose products, which will mean less clutter, and of course less waste. Yes, those two examples might not be as surprising and `radical' as others in the book, but they are both things that I was aware of before, and had made moves towards, but I am now actually going to do something about them properly - Smith's book shows how ridiculous it is to hold back on going the whole way. We have nothing to loose and everything to gain.
But the best bit about The Book of Rubbish Ideas is hearing Smith's inimitable voice leap off the pages in her empathy for individuals, and saucy ideas (read the book!), as well as her cheeky and light-hearted but persistent ridicule of how twisted our every day lives have ended up.