Shopping or not shopping that is….

June 2010

Can we understand the gap existing between foodmiles (a term first defined by Andrea Paxton in 1990 that became a largely used collective expression) and footprint (a scientific carbon emission measure) by looking at our ways of shopping?

I can think of three ways, but please let me know of others:

1. the fast and convenient way of getting maximum products needed in minimum time.

2. the “flânerie” in getting the needed “stuff” on the way to somewhere else or by simply wanting to take the time for shopping in a day off.  I like the idea of “flânerie” attached to a task ( I think of shopping as being one of my least favorite tasks). It also has something of the quality of oral tradition, urban myth and collective imagination.

3. spending the time shopping, on something else. The image of the milk delivery for example would be appropriate to the “flânerie” , the best of all, “flânerie” to the front door, home delivered . We don’t have it in France. Do you still have it up in Aberdeenshire? Would that not be good to have most of the best local produce home delivered?

40cmcube of ...

This entry was posted in Carbon Emission, Climate, Climate Dynamic, Contemporary Art, Deveron Arts, Food Mileage, Foot Print, Participation, Stefanie Bourne. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Shopping or not shopping that is….

  1. Hi there, not sure if I understand the idea of ‘flanerie’, but I certainly love my little flanerie in the morning to the front door to pick up my milk bottles and also the one to the chicken shed and pick up the eggs. Is that what you mean with flanerie? There is also of course the flanerie to the herbs plot and the veggie plot.

  2. stéfanie says:

    This is it. Shopping with ‘flânerie’ is also on the way to school, to the doctor or any appointment when you are 10mn earlier or waiting for the train….

  3. Stonehead says:

    I seem to recall my French teacher telling me, many years ago, that his ambition was to be a flâneur—a gentleman of leisure who could idly and aimlessly wander about while secretly consuming the sights, smells and sensations of society. If so, wouldn’t shopping give purpose to your wanderings and stop them from being flânerie? Unless, of course, you shopped aimlessly to aid and abet your secret consumption of impressions, observations and feelings.

    Anyway, on the subject of combining “missions”, we do exactly that as a matter of course. On Saturday mornings, for example, we drive to Huntly from Insch. While there we take in rugby training, swimming, banking, grocery shopping, and a visit to the recycling centre.

    If we have to go to Aberdeen—two or three times a year—then we’ll try to fit as many things to our day as possible and make it into a major outing, usually by train. It usually means doing the annual clothes and shoe shopping, seeing a film, visiting a couple of bookshops, nipping into the camping shop, seeing the dentist, and time for flânerie—in the sense that my teacher meant.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s