The Clean Hippie

Seeking the sustainable life in New York City

My Letter of the Week to My Reps July 23, 2010

Way to go. I just saw the news about the so-called “Energy Bill,” which is really just democrats rolling over and showing their bellies to the Republicans.

“We can’t get the votes. It’s not possible.” Is that all we will ever hear from Democrats? At least Republicans get it done, even if I disagree with all of their policies. I had such high hopes when Obama got elected. I thought maybe since Democrats had taken it back, they would have the courage and conviction to undo Bush’s policies and steer us away from relying on oil from dangerous petro-states. To address the crisis of our time: climate change. To clean up the air and the Gulf. Instead we have…. Nothing at all.

Your legacy will be the Congress who was too scared to save our country from poisoning itself with oil and coal. Congratulations.


Alden Wicker

New York, NY 10025



NYC Taxis Forced to Go Green July 6, 2010

Filed under: New York,news — Alden @ 2:24 pm

NYC taxis and those sketchy/fancy black town cars (depending on who you ask) have always been associated with gas guzzling Lincoln Town Cars. Some taxis have gone hybrid, but now the transition is set to, ahem, accelerate. Lincoln Town Cars will go the way of Oldsmobile next year when Ford shuts down the Canadian plant that manufactures them. This leaves taxi companies, private services, and police with one option: go green! Or at least greener.

Does this mean I’ll be taking the taxi more often now? Probably not. But I giggle at the thought of businessmen tucking their knees in to fit into little, black, hybrid, private cars to get shuttled from meeting to dinner to drinks.

Read the whole story here.


NYC’s Highline to Double in Size June 28, 2010

Filed under: New York,news,Places to go — Alden @ 2:05 am
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How many times have I said that I love New York City parks? Even as the MTA struggles to keep service running and reliable, the city continues to shell out for the most beautiful and well-done green spaces. I have no problem with that. Really, what better way to use taxpayer money? (Rhetorical question, let’s not do a political debate here.)

Anyway, case in point: The Highline, a new park that combines an old railroad bed, native plants, and a highly developed post-industrial aesthetic for amazing results. I’ve been there twice, and was hugely impressed with the landscaping, design, and even the art installation at the end. And it’s not even done yet!

From Inhabitat:

The new section, like the existing park, will feature open joints in the concrete to encourage grass to grow in the cracks. At one point in the extension, the concrete will be stripped away to reveal the steel girders supporting the trestle. Greenery along the path will feature mainly plants that grow naturally in Manhattan — it’s hard to call anything in the concrete jungle “native” — but they’ll be interspersed with other flora so that something will be in bloom during the whole growing season.

At one point, the trail will ascend above the rail line into the canopy of sumac trees. In the shade cast by the overhead walkway will go plants that grow naturally in the shade of the City’s skyscrapers. The extension will also feature its own version of Central Park’s Ramble, a stretch of dense trees and shrubs called the Chelsea Thicket. (I foresee lots of native Chelsea wildlife activity behind these trees in that other great New York tradition.)

Also forthcoming are a lounging lawn, a sitting area framed with an empty billboard frame and a 30th Street entrance.

Cue “I love New York” music.


Register now for a great fundraising event! April 10, 2010

Filed under: events,news,shoutout — Alden @ 11:31 pm
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I was forwarded this email from a friend. I’m registering now. If I can’t go, then I know my money is still going to a good place!

Hi guys,

This year, I’m co-chairing the annual GlamourGals Foundation event.  To refresh your memory, GlamourGals was founded by Rachel Doyle (Cornell ’05), and works to build compassionate teen leaders through service with the elderly.
We’re very excited to announce our upcoming event!
Glamour in the City
Thursday, May 13
26 Little West 12th Street
For only $25, not only are you donating to charity (all of the proceeds go directly back to improve programming for our teen girls), but you get all of the following amazing stuff!
– Drink all the free Patron, Ultimat, and Yuengling you want from 7-8pm (That’s probably worth more than $25 right there!)
– Get a $25 gift certificate to Butterfield 8 when you walk through the door
– You can enter to win a NYC weekend Staycation at the Loews Regency Hotel
– Mix your own perfume with Aromachology
This is going to be a super fun event – free booze, live DJ, and tons of hot New Yorkers!  And of course, lots of your super awesome Cornell friends will be there!
I know it seems really early to commit to this, but, trust me, you do not want to miss out on this great price!  Only $25 until March 31.  Then tickets jump up to $50!
Registration will take you less than a minute.  Click here to register today!
I would love to see you all come out to this great event and support a great cause!

Food Fraud: Maybe I should just give up April 2, 2010

Filed under: Food,news — Alden @ 2:18 am
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When I go to restaurants that serve fish, I’m always careful to choose responsibly. Chilean Sea Bass? No way!

Well, an article by Washington Post (sent to me by my  step dad, thanks!) describes the widespread substitution of one cheap food for another. It includes corn syrup for honey, catfish for snapper, even imported crab for one of my favorite foods: Chesapeake blue crab. Come on!

It’s just another reason why you can never trust what your food is or where it comes from, unless you can look your farmer or fisherman in the eye as he bags up your purchase.