Old man, hipster sweaters for the Environment!

Thursday, February 09, 2012


I wear old man sweaters; not just because I am a filthy hipster or because I am thrifty and can get them for super cheap at the Bargain Box on Laurier (though, those are probably contributing factors) but because Ottawa is freezing and I am playing an active part in reducing my energy consumption.

Back home, the weather is on average 10 degrees warmer and still my house is freezing. My dad is a big supporter of layers, and he gets exasperated when one of us tinkers with the thermostat. I guess that’s where my love of chunky knits started, stealing my dad’s, mom’s, or anyone’s sweaters to stay warm around the house or in the shop. Here in Ottawa, I don’t have the privilege of controlling my heat which is a major disadvantage of being a tenant, especially because I still end up forking out the money for heating bills. Last week our heat was out and I remembered what it meant to be constantly bundled up in woollen sweaters, even sleeping in them to stay warm. My boss mentioned that he keeps his apartment at 16 degrees… he may be a sustainability geek and slightly insane though.

Coming up is National Sweater Day, not as drastic as turning off the heat completely but a day to turn the thermostat down a few degrees and pull out that sweater your great-aunt knit you for last x-mass. It’s a day to recognize ourselves, Canadians, as one of the major consumers of energy and producers of greenhouse gases and to take a step in the right direction to mitigate our effects.

Recently, I have seen a lot of events based on ugly x-mass sweaters; use them again or dig through your grandparents’ closets for a great, tacky choice (the uglier, bulkier, and warmer the better- extra points if they have animals on them). After all, the 9th is a Friday, host a party! Not only will the sweaters keep you warm but you can turn down the thermostat by an extra few degrees because the alcohol will keep you toasty as well ;)

Check out the Facebook event here !

~ meriss. - campus sustainability coordinator
photo credit - tumblr_lw0m2fk26Y1qdqv28o1_500

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