Sunday, April 19, 2009


A Grandma J... DOCUdramaMENTORY
Laundry soap smugglers


"Green green, it's green they say on the far side of the hill...."

Yes, this is a green documentary. Grandma J may have a huge carbon footprint, but with her weekly pedicures, that should one day be a thing of the past. That's what Michelle #4 tells me, and since I get the ultra mega package deal, complete with hot rock massage and gangrene exfoliating, I'm gonna take her at her word....I'm a believer.




Enough about Grandma J's feet, I want to talk about dish washing detergents. Let's talk about the sales ban of dish washing detergents with phosphates. The City of Spokane Washington has outlawed the sale of such products because they pollute the waterways.

At first most Spokane-istas were fine with this...I mean who doesn't want clean lakes, rivers and streams? Who wants to catch a trout only to find that it tastes like phosphates? But, many people were shocked to find that products like Seventh Generation, Ecover and Trader Joe's left their dishes encrusted with food, smeared with grease and too gross to use without rewashing them by hand. The culprit was hard water, which is mineral-rich and resistant to soap.

But it's not easy to get sparkling dishes when you go green.

As a result, there has been a quiet rush of Spokane-istas heading ten miles east on Interstate 90 into Idaho in search of old-school suds.

They stocks up on detergent at a Costco in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, and most don't care who knows it.

"Yes, I am a smuggler, I'm taking my chances because dirty dishes I cannot live with." said one smuggler. In truth, the ban applies to the sale of phosphate detergent — not its use or possession — so no one is in legal trouble.

The ban will be expanded statewide in July 2010, the same time similar laws take effect in several other states.

Some have taken to washing their dishes on the dishwasher's pots-and-pans cycle, which takes longer and uses five gallons more water. I wonder if that isn't as tough on the environment as phosphates.

So readers, in three hundred and forty words or less, tell me what would you do.
Would you travel ten miles to get the dish washing soap? How about using the pots-and-pans cycle? Hand wash?



Here are the words to the song Grandma J referenced at the start of this post. click on it to enlarge.




17 comments:

Linda said...

I guess if KS puts a ban on the phosphates, I would go into CO and get detergent. However, if CO puts the ban on them, CO will come our way. What is the use of dishwashers if you have to redo the dishes by hand?

Anonymous said...

Maybe you can get the shamwow guy to do your dishes, but does he have to wear his headset?

I can't do dishes, my hands break out in a rash.

Colin

Living on the Spit said...

I would be a smuggler too.

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

No, the only thing I can think of that I'd go out of my way for would be wine or salsa. Otherwise, I'd make do.

Grandma J. looks great in pink.

Anonymous said...

Grandma J,

Thought of you today when I laid over at DFW airport on my way home from North Carolina. BTW I would smuggle!

Postcard Cindy

Busy Bee Suz said...

Wow...the taste of phosphate fish would be enough for me to find another solution. I think we have hard enough water as it is here....I use an eco friendly/phosphate detergent and I don't have food or crud on mine. Maybe they just need better dishwashers??? I do love my good appliances!!!
I could not be a smuggler...I would be so scared the green police would come find me. (You know, I am part of the green police. Right?)
Great post GJ!
You could always have JJ do your pre-rinse for you...Cocoa loves licking the dishes before they get washed. yuck.

Busy Bee Suz said...

I meant phosphate FREE.

Life with Kaishon said...

I have to come read this tomorrow when I can slowly relish the intelligent writing : ) but for now, I am trying to shove Kaishon in bed so I can also see The Apprentice! I am SO excited.

The Chocolate Lady said...

I hope they dont do that here in CA, but they probably will, we have enough "environmentalists" here!

Currently, I wash my dishes by hand, and just use a "light wash" in my dishwasher afterwards. Really, the dishwasher is just sterilizing with hot water...they are all ready clean enough to eat off of when I do them by hand. (Ive never seen scrubbers in the dishwasher, so I dont trust it to CLEAN my dishes).

So, are my liquid detergents (hand washing types) going to be part of this wacky ban?

Pat Jenkins said...

first off i loove this grandma j opinion docu-drama-mentory!!! but the real winner(s) in spokane is not the enviroment, but the kids who used to be made to do the dishes around the house, though "can't" anymore because they don't come clean!

Karen said...

We do all ours by hand and I don't think the green police have come this far east yet! LOL

big hair envy said...

I just made a mental note to stock up on Cascade before the invasion of the green-police!!!

I rinse my dishes, then wash them on the light cycle in the dishwasher. Pots, pans and large bowls are washed by hand.

Jen said...

I use the original Palmolive -it's green- so I'm safe, right? :D

Elm said...

I wash my dishes by hand 'cause we don't use too many pot and pans. However, if I had to use a dish washer, I would smuggle that better detergent! I would feel a rush of excitment trying to get it into my home. I would shiver with fear everytime a police car passed by my home. Then, eventually, the fear would cause me to take that soap, throw it into my car's trunk, and bury it in some secluded country hideout.

Anonymous said...

janet said..
I hand wash anyways, thank goodness. I wouldn't want to be poisoning our fish!
Truth be told, if I had to smuggle it, I'd drive 10 miles, but not much more than that.

Life with Kaishon said...

I would drive almost any where for clean dishes. I don't mind doing illegal stuff. : ) Obviously not, since I watch bootlegged movies with Gary every weekend.... I like my dishes totally free of grime. It's imperative to my state of mind!

Noe Noe Girl...A Queen of all Trades. said...

What BHE said. And I like paper plates too.