Lately I’ve been trying to think of some easy ways that my husband and I can make our lifestyle a little more eco-friendly. We’re certainly not ready to move into a Tumbleweed Tiny House or do our business in a cardboard “shitbox” (hey, I didn’t name it). But we can certainly manage some small, easy changes.
My husband is not necessarily opposed to going green, but sometimes when I nonchalantly mention doing something a little different, the Hubby looks at me as if I’ve just grown a purple horn from my left nostril. You know “the look” … the one that screams, “You want me to change WHAT?!?” I swear, I’m not asking him to wear recycled underwear or anything, but any change can be difficult. I get it. So, I tread cautiously when recommending any grand upheaval of our daily routine.
Imagine my surprise when my dear husband approached me recently with his very own idea of how we can reduce the energy consumption from one of our most used (and most beloved) appliances…the coffee pot?!
He made his case, and on this rare occasion – although I saw through his charade – I had to admit that he was making sense. Admitted it to myself, that is. Never admit to your husband that he’s making sense; it’s a very slippery slope. Next thing you know he’ll think he can make sense twice in a row. But seriously (almost), you have to understand something about me, and about my husband, in order to appreciate this most recent “green” change that has become our new daily routine.
I am addicted to coffee
Seriously. Not just a little bit. It took him a while, but my husband has learned that he should avoid eye contact with me, keep a distance of at least 4 feet, and don’t even think about conversation … until my second cup. Without my coffee, I’m a non-functioning lump of skin. As I explained adamantly to my husband, coffee is my sacred life-blood and you’d better have a damned good reason for wanting to fiddle with my coffee pot! So, it was no small undertaking for him to even raise the possibility that I turn off the coffee pot. What the what?!? It has an OFF switch?? What the hell is that for?!
I work from home. My coffee pot and I have a very good and predictable daily routine. That routine typically does not involve an OFF switch. I brew a pot in the morning and it stays piping hot until dinner time, when I brew a fresh pot, which then stays hot until bedtime. No, I’m not exaggerating. I am seriously… addicted … to coffee.
But…there’s something you also need to understand about my husband…
My husband is a gadget-addicted coffee snob
I have fairly simple tastes when it comes to coffee. As long as it smells like coffee, is moderately warm, and doesn’t taste like mop-water, I’ll consume huge quantities of the stuff. Not so with the Hubby. He’s not a coffee drinker. He’s a coffee connoisseur (a.k.a. coffee snob). For him, coffee consumption is a complicated ordeal. It has to taste just right, be at just the right temperature, the beans have to shine just right from having the right amount of oil on them … you get the idea. And, if it’s been sitting there warming for more than 33 minutes, it “tastes burnt” and is, of course, undrinkable. If it’s put in a plastic or stainless steel travel mug, you may as well hand him a cup of dirt. He won’t drink it once it’s “contaminated” by the taste of plastic or metal.
My husband is also somewhat of a geek. I mean that in the best possible way, as he is – and always will be – my favorite geek. But a geek, nonetheless. It’s extremely difficult for him to pass up a really neat gadget. It was because of this fact, that when he approached me with this new “energy-saving” idea of his, I knew he had an ulterior motive. I saw that familiar “bright shiny object” look on his face. He’d found a new gadget, and he was mesmerized.
The Hubby’s Plea For an Energy-Saving New Gadget
As I mentioned, I’m at home all day and my coffee pot pretty much stays on from morning until bedtime. What my husband had found was a “must-have” super coffee-keeper-warmer gadget that he vehemently argued would keep the coffee we brewed warm and tasting fresher longer, without the burnt taste which causes him so much distress. I gave him the “yeah, right” look that he’s all too familiar with.
It was then that the Hubby, with a surprising twist of genius, launched into his explanation of how this gadget would reduce the amount of electricity we (I) currently use by keeping the coffee pot on all day. Ok, now he had my attention. Eventually, after having him grovel for an appropriate amount of time, I reluctantly agreed to the purchase of the super coffee thing-a-ma-jigger. I was convinced I wouldn’t like it. Keep in mind, this is my coffee pot we’re talking about.
Know what? It has turned out to be a really good thing.
The Super-Duper, Energy-Saving, Must-Have Coffee-Lover’s Gadget
This is the. Yep, there it is. Just sitting there looking all simple and obvious. This is how my husband has managed to get me to turn off my coffee pot. And I didn’t even have to kill him. I admit I was a little reluctant to use it at first. I felt a slight twinge of angst the first time I turned off my old faithful Cuisinart coffee brewer. But, by doing it I’m probably also doubling its life-span!
How has this gadget made our routine different? Now I brew a pot of coffee in the morning, and as soon as it’s finished brewing I pour the coffee into the Zojirushi Airpot and turn off the coffee pot. To my surprise, this thing actually keeps my coffee steaming all day with no electricity! It has a nifty little pump handle that pops up from the top, so I just have to push the handle down and hold my cup somewhere in the neighborhood of the spout …. works like a charm!
It’s a win-win situation. We use less electricity and dump less coffee down the drain, which is better for our budget and better for the environment. I get my continuous flow of caffeinated life-blood. My husband will now drink coffee that was brewed more than 33 minutes ago. His picky taste-buds are satisfied because the coffee hasn’t been “baking” on the warmer all day, and the glass liner doesn’t contaminate the flavor of the coffee.
Bottom line: If your coffee pot is working overtime, I encourage you to give this idea some consideration. As I’m writing this post, the ($15 off the regular price). Oh, and if you happen to drink something other than coffee (?!?), the airpot will keep all your hot beverages hot, and your cold beverages cold.
This is the kind of change I love to find (and share!). The kind that’s easy and painless, saves me money, and is also better for the environment. Please use the “share” buttons below to share this idea with your friends. And, if you’ve stumbled across a similar gadget that helps you “go green” please share it in the comments!