Monday, August 24, 2009

Behavior Change Incentives

How much does it take to change your behavior?

For some bad habits, a lot, when it comes to me... But one thing that's really struck me these past months is how many Torontonians (including me) will alter their behavior for a nickel.

Yes, for years now, many environmentally conscious people have been bringing their own bags to grocery stores. I did when I thought of it... (my local market is basically a health food store, and they've always had really good, reusable bags... but I didn't always remember to bring them.)

But they passed a law in the Toronto, and since June 1, 2009, it's the law for retailers to charge at least 5 cents for a plastic bag. And I'm not sure I've spent a nickel yet. (Oh, yes I have. On delivery food. I mean, you can't take your own bag to the restaurant for the delivery guy to use. Would kind of defeat the purpose of delivery...)

I have a bag that's always in my purse... and when I go to get groceries, I never (rarely) forget my bigger bags anymore. If I do, I only buy enough to fit in the small one in my purse.

So, apparently, a nickel is enough to change my behavior. I guess it helps that it's a behavior I wanted to change... just needed the nickel push.

And it also helps that it's changed the behavior of the sales clerks. Now, they have to ask, "Do you want a bag?", whereas they used to just automatically start dumping your purchases into a bag and you'd have to stop them and say, "Hey, you know what? I've got a bag," or, "I can fit that into my tote bag, or backpack, or put it in with my sweaty gym clothes."

Apparently I'll do a lot for a nickel. How about you?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Beer, Bones and Killer Unicorns

I was ecstatic this morning to read a small clip in the newspaper informing me that women who drink beer are less likely to suffer from osteoporosis. I knew I beer had more uses than keeping my weight up. ;-) Yay!

In other news, top secret footage from an attempted PSA about the dangers of unicorns has been released. Beware!

To learn more about the dangers of unicorns, check out It might save your life!

Also, make sure to buy, RAMPANT, by Diana Peterfreund. Here's her beautiful cover.

Friday, August 14, 2009

The Joy of Reading (and Sex)

Blogging about the joy of reading (and sex) over at Nobody Writes it Better, today.

Also, we've got a new member at Drunk Writer Talk! Come by to say hi.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

So You Think It's All Over?

So You Think You Can Dance, Canada starts tonight!!! No break for us up here. Back to back SYTYCD. This photo is last year's contestants.

And this year, it must be overlapping with the next US one, too, since that starts in early September...

Wow. So much dance to watch on TV. Tough job, but I think I can handle it.

Last year, the Canadian version of SYTYCD was AWESOME -- in spite of Jean Marc's strange word choices -- he might even be stranger than L'il C -- and everyone trying to coin a phrase like Mary's hot tamale train. Really, people. Give it up.

If this year, they can find even one dancer as hot and fabulous as last year's winner, Nico, I'll be happy.

And he wasn't just hot. Did I mention he was also talented? American viewers might recognize the choreographer from this one from Season One? or Two? of the US one.... Bad boy Blake...

Yes, he is talented... But here are some more photos :-) Strung together with music....

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Like coffee? Try some for free!

My pal Marilyn Brant, who's fabulous novel According to Jane will be released in October of this year, is running a taste test on the new Starbucks instant coffee, currently only available in Chicago, Seattle and London.

If you'd like to be among the first to try it, click here, and get information on free samples.
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