Made In The U.S.A.

Archive for August, 2009|Monthly archive page

Hometown Happenings

In Adventures on August 31, 2009 at 12:29 am

According to a story a coupla weeks ago in the beautiful Belleville News Democrat (thanks, Reader Dan from Belleville) there should be a new MITUSA-related store in the hometown opening tomorrow. From the BND:

Christina Keck and her husband Jason have established Peace By Piece, a Belleville boutique that will specialize in products made in America, fair trade and companies that give back to their community. The couple anticipates opening its doors at 132 W. Main St. by Sept. 1. You can call 233-1519 to find out more.


You gotta be careful when you buy blueberries.

In Adventures on August 29, 2009 at 12:01 am

You gotta be careful when you buy blueberries. A lot of ’em come from the upper Midwest. But some… [he pauses, looking dramatically over each shoulder, then lowering his voice to a dusky whisper…] …some are from Canada.


Some American Stuff You Can Buy

In Adventures on August 27, 2009 at 12:02 am

It’s been a while since I’ve talked about some of the junk you can buy when you’re buying American, so consider this a return to early form.

Turns out you can buy Tapcons and Quikrete.

Tapcons are heavy duty concrete screws designed to allow you to screw stuff into masonry. I needed to remount a light fixture to my brick wall. The Tapcons, turns out, are Made In The USA. Illinois, if I recall correctly. Read the rest of this entry »

I broke the rules. I bought foreign.

In Adventures on August 25, 2009 at 12:50 am

Mea culpa.

You may recall the hideous adventures of headlights for the Hyundai? Hideous because I seem to replace the damn things on a regular basis. As it turns out, I replaced this same driver’s side headlight on February 18th, 2009. That’s like 6 months ago. That sucks!

Today I decided to replace the headlight that’s been out for a couple of weeks. But this time, unlike the last time, I couldn’t find a MITUSA headlight. Read the rest of this entry »

Adventures in Not Buying

In Adventures on August 23, 2009 at 12:12 am

I did it. I didn’t really buy anything for a week.

Sunday I stocked up on groceries and coffee to make sure I could get through the work week without a Starbucks stop or my typical lunchtime dining out habit. (By “dining out” what I really mean is driving through, walking in and taking out, or maybe a visit to the grocery store salad bar.) Read the rest of this entry »

My birthday.

In Adventures on August 21, 2009 at 12:05 am

My birthday is coming up, and so I’m obligated to provide gift suggestions to my beloved. That raises a question: do I ask her for only MITUSA items, or do I ask her specifically for all of the non-MITUSA items I can’t buy but desperately want?

Turns out, the right answer (IMHO) is to ask for the few items I want that are MITUSA (a new-to-me used record player, some books that are probably printed in the USA, Read the rest of this entry »

Success. Sorta kinda. So far.

In Adventures on August 19, 2009 at 12:33 am

Remember how I was going to try to not buy stuff this week? Well I’m in the thick of it at the moment.

Night one arrived, and after 18 straight hours of keeping my cash in my hand I bought something. I think I get a semi exemption though: wedding invitation samples from Etsy. (These things were gorgeous. You’d have bought them too.) And at least they were HITUSA–handmade in the USA.

Day 2 came and went sans purchase. Yippee! Read the rest of this entry »

What do you help when you buy American?

In Adventures on August 17, 2009 at 12:58 am

I keep harping on this topic, but it’s because every day I’m further convinced that what I thought would happen isn’t what’s happening.

I thought I would buy American and come to understand the simple idea of being a drop in the bucket, making a real change by buying products from here in order to slowly rebuild the empty factories and eliminated jobs and decimated cities that have crumbled with the foreign flight of manufacturing. Read the rest of this entry »

A week without buying.

In Adventures on August 15, 2009 at 12:36 am

Did I mention that I’m going to try not to buy anything this week? I am.

I stocked up on groceries, including coffee and lunches, and I’m going to give it a whirl. I did not top off the Hyundai, so I’m fully expecting to stop for gas in a day or two. But beyond that, I’m going to try to remain receipt-free and see how it goes. Read the rest of this entry »

I bought olive oil!

In Adventures on August 13, 2009 at 12:39 am

Trust me: that exclamation point in the title is deserved. I’m ecstatic. I bought olive oil!

I’m surprised I didn’t drink it straight from the bottle on the ride home.

It’s Annie’s Naturals brand of basil infused olive oil. Since I mainly want it for my caprese salad (which is seasoned prominently with basil) I thought it might be the perfect answer. Plus, nowhere on the bottle does it mention the countries of origin of the olives–the way every other olive oil does. Read the rest of this entry »

Area Man Buys Local Food

In Adventures on August 11, 2009 at 12:23 am

I went to visit my parents this evening (read: I went to their house to go fishing) and did my weekly grocery shopping afterward. In Illinois. At a different Schnucks than I’m used to. (For those of you not in the St. Louis metro area, Schnucks is a grocery store. The L.A. equivalent would be Vons. The Chicago equivalent would be Jewel. I have no idea what it is on the East Coast. Maybe Kroger.) The Schnucks on the west end of Belleville, near the Skyview Drive-In, had an end-cap in the vegetable department with “Locally Grown” options. The farm was even listed. There were green peppers, zucchini, yellow squash and cucumbers. So I stocked up. My Schnucks, in the ‘hood, doesn’t do that. I was glad that enough people must want to buy locally that they decided to promote it somewhat prominently. Warm fuzzies and whatnot.


Go swap some clothes.

In Adventures on August 9, 2009 at 12:14 am

The Swap-O-Rama sounds like a pretty great thing. It’s a gathering of mostly do-it-yourselfers who swap old clothes and sew them into new clothes. In more official terms, Swap-O-Rama is “a clothing swap and series of do-it-yourself workshops in which a community explores creative reuse through the recycling of used clothing.”

Check the site to find an upcoming Swap near you.


Success! I think.

In Adventures on August 7, 2009 at 12:47 am

Unless you count making a $1,000 deposit on a wedding ceremony and reception venue (Windows On Washington, 2.27.10) as buying something, then I successfully didn’t buy anything yesterday. Aside from that big check, my money stayed with me.

It wasn’t too hard. Read the rest of this entry »

I bought something. Dammit.

In Adventures on August 5, 2009 at 8:49 am

I was driving from work last night on my way to a networking event (ugh) and recounting how I’d made it through the day without buying anything, and now just needed to get through this event (at a microbrewery, so there would be temptations to avoid) and my subsequent tennis lesson (not really any danger there) without making a purchase. I’d packed sufficient snacks to be considered a legitimate dinner, so the danger of driving through someplace was minimized. Read the rest of this entry »

I’m going to try to buy nothing.

In Adventures on August 4, 2009 at 12:16 am

I’m going to try to buy nothing. Tomorrow. One day. That’s all.

No Starbucks. No lunch. No gas. Nothing.

Wish me luck.


The Delocator

In Adventures on August 2, 2009 at 12:40 am

I’m conflicted about this, because on the one hand I really want to support local businesses in every aspect of my consumer life. But on the other hand, I really like my venti iced coffee with three Splendas and half-and-half.

The Delocator is a web site you can use to find local business alternatives to corporate empire outposts in your area. Read the rest of this entry »