More money- and world-saving tips from the Selfish Hippie

I write for a humor blog with two friends, James Malins and Cherie Michiko, called Misusing Big Words. This post was originally published here:
http://misusingbigwords.blogspot.com/2008/05/ive-been-getting-little-off-track.html
I've been getting a little off-track lately with crusades and Canadians and stories of solar-powered stegosaurs, so let's get back to the basics. Here's a random smattering of tips and tricks to help you live out the code of the Selfish Hippie: save money while saving the world.

What a Crock!
For Christmas last year, I asked for a crock pot for purely lazy reasons. After a few somewhat disgusting stews, I've had some good times making some delicious meals that take about a half an hour of work and that make so much I can live off the leftovers for up to two weeks. Imagine my delight, then, when I read about how good crock pots are for your energy bill. Bingo! So, as long as you can avoid any mishaps like burning pork shoulder and making your whole apartment smell like roast pig (yes, it does happen), then the crock pot can be your favorite method of cooking like it is mine.

Toothbrush Tricks
According to my dentist, old toothbrushes should be changed for new ones every 2 months. According to about.com, it's 3 months. Either way, that's 4-6 toothbrushes per year. So the first tip, while it's not necessarily hippie, is to stock up when prices are down. For example, I caught a toothbrush sale a month ago where they were 50 cents apiece. Needless to say, I won't need to buy another toothbrush for a few years. Now that you're stocked up, let me lay some hippie speak on you: after you're done using that toothbrush on the hard to reach places in your mouth, toss it in the dishwasher to clean it and then use it for those hard to reach places in the home. Window tracks, tile grout, and many other things that you can blackmail a child/roommate/girlfriend into cleaning are prime candidates for the toothbrush trick. If you're not into cleaning, they're also great for all sorts of craft and woodworking projects. Be creative.

Water Worriers vs. Water Warriors
Water can be a major sinkhole on your bills. Luckily, there are all kinds of ways to use less water, do less work, and save more time and money. If you're not down with the whole "If it's yellow, let it mellow. If it's brown, flush it down," mentality for bathroom energy efficiency, here's a few other tips on how to save water. (And no, you don't have to buy into the doom-and-gloom apocalyptic shpeal at the beginning of that article, but you can still profit from their tricks.)

Free Money Reminder
In case you missed my song and dance about this new site called Revolution Money Exchange, check out that previous post. Basically, this site is like PayPal but without credit cards. Instead, you send money directly from your checking account to another. They are completely secure and legitimate, and it's actually run by one of the guys from AOL (but it's not total rubbish like AOL). And, even cooler, extended until May 15, they're giving away $25 just for signing up. If you click on the green button on the right and sign up as my referral, I'll get a $10 referral bonus, which I'll then split with you. So basically, you're coming away with $30 for doing almost nothing. I already spent most of mine on booze and women, then wasted the rest of it. Oh, and the service they provide is pretty cool, so it'd be worth using even if they didn't pay you to.

Do you feel like you're becoming a selfish hippie? Have some tricks or tips you'd like to share with the community? Leave them in the comments. Until then, keep saving money while saving the world.

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