Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A is for . . .


Affluent? For some folks.


All? For other folks.


I'm talking about the APLS group. You know . . . Affluent Persons Living Sustainably. A for Affluent has been the topic of much debate and even the monthly carnival for September.


For many folks, Affluent reminds them of their place in the world, their ability and responsibility to make positive changes. For others, though, it is jarring and exclusive. More than one person has noted that they would join the group but for the Affluent.
In the September carnival, Melinda at One Green Generation suggested changing Affluent Persons Living Sustainably to All Persons Living Sustainably.


We invited feedback in the comments and in a poll. While most comments strongly supported retaining Affluent, most votes in the poll supported switching to All People Living Sustainably. Once again, we were divided. As Julie Artz so eloquently argued in the comments, though, America is already divided. We must work toward unification, get rid of lines and classifications that pull us apart.
So that's what we'd like to do - find something that works for everyone, build a group everyone can belong to, work together for a better planet. Here is how we hope to do that:
We challenge you to come up with a new "A" for the APLS acronym.

One that is less controversial than Affluent but that holds more meaning than All. You can change all of the APLS words if need be.

Please submit your ideas here for new meaning behind APLS in the comments here (comment on the submissions too if one strikes your fancy). We'll then narrow down the choices, vote and, as a group, choose our favorite. Whomever submits the winning term will have $50 donated to a charity of their choice by yours truly . . . and the satisfaction of bringing people together.


So have at it. I know there are some gifted folks out there capable of making virtually anything into an acronym.

Contest closes Saturday at midnight. Look for a poll for voting next week.

27 comments:

ruchi aka arduous said...

How about "Adaptable." I think that would highlight the fact that there are some people in the world without the resources to adapt, but that hopefully, in the end, we will all become "adaptable."

Abbie said...

How about "Amazing." Because we all are amazing.

Or "Aware."

JAM said...

I second adaptable. Not that we're voting yet, but still. Beats thinking of something on my own...

ablom said...

Ardent

Joyce said...

I'm sticking with "affluent". Yep, I'm stubborn.

Green Me said...

Abbondonza: Persons Living Sustainably (APLS)

There is an organic farm in our area named abondonzza, an Italian word that translates to abundance, affluence, plenty...all words which are catch phrases in today's culture and words that various members of the APLS group can identify with.

I also feel that the Italian twist places further emphasis on APLS living a sustainable life full of abundance, passion and community.

katecontinued said...

Adaptable is my vote. Every time I think I have learned to be adaptable I am challenged in some new way. It is a continuous journey.

The gerund might work too . . . adapting. This form of the word seems more ongoing, rather than a finite characteristic or state of being.

Allie said...

Astute?

Actually, I really like Adaptable. I love what you're doing here, but I was never comfortable with the term Affluent.

Theresa said...

I've always had more of a problem with the word sustainable: I know I'm affluent, but I am definitely not yet living sustainably. How about APLLS - Adaptable people Learning to Live Sustainably?

Crunchy Chicken said...

Yes, but if you change the "affluent" part of the acronym, you are changing the original intent of the group. That is, people with money are choosing to live sustainably rather than a consumptive lifestyle.

Of course, if the goal is to be more inclusive and promote sustainable living for everyone, that's another story. But, it sounds like the APLS group was trying to set an example for others. And, those not "affluent" tend to already be living sustainably just because living with less tends to be more sustainable.

Anyhoo, if you really want to change the "A" because people are uncomfy with it, how about something more radical like:

Angry People Living Sustainably

We're not going to take it anymore! Yes, you are right, that is too negative.

ruchi aka arduous said...

Heh, Angry People Living Sustainably certainly sounds like a force to be reckoned with. Especially with a six foot tall crazy chicken as its mascot!!

Crunchy Chicken said...

Well, Ruchi, I do know how to crack a whip.

Mist said...

How 'bout "Aware"?

Aware People Living Sustainably. After all, haven't most of us come to this from an awakening of sorts? A sudden awareness of our own effects on the planet? The global crisis? The loss of simplicity in our lives?

And no, I wouldn't recommend awakened, even though I used it in my description. It sounds snooty to me. :)

Mist said...

Bah! I missed Theresa's comment somehow. I like her addition of a second "L": Learning to Live Sustainably. That's where I'm at, at least.

Donna said...

How about tweaking green me's suggestion a little to:
Abbondonza: People Learning to Live Sustainably (APLLS)
I'm still working on it -- will be back later. :)

Donna said...

or...
Amidst Abundance, People Learning to Live Sustainably (AAPLLS)

Going Crunchy said...

Arise! People to Live Sustainably!(with a little fist pump in the air)

I think everybody else already picked the good ones. Shan

Crunchy Chicken said...

I got it. Anal People Living Sustainably. Huh? Huh?

kaleidescopeliving said...

My first thought was either adaptable or aware. Both of these have already been suggested but I wanted to support those ideas by leaves a comment.

Green Bean said...

Love it all!!! Keep the ideas coming.

Crunchy - The original intent was to come up with something better than YAWNs (Young and Wealth but Normal). The next thought was to bring people together in the "bushel basket." The discussion on affluence was a byproduct - a very important one but not part of the original intent. AND when we do the poll, we'll include Affluent as an option. Oh course, Anal People Living Sustainably totally rules! and applies, most likely, to us all. ;-)

Erin said...

ardent
attentive
accountable

Actually, I agree with the person who suggested leaving the affluent and adding the "learning to". Most Americans are affluent, but not many are living sustainably. I certainly am not, but I would like to learn how!

How about Aspiring for Progress and Living Sustainably?

Or Aspiring People Learning to Live Sustainably?

Phew! Enough brainstorming

Rosa said...

"Aware" sounds really smug to me. Nobody's aware of everything and it makes me think about the organic mamas who don't like what I feed my kid or the NASCAR stuff on his favorite t-shirt.

FWIW, I was pointed to a really awesome presentation by Kim Stanley Robinson last night. At about minute 45 he talks about how "affluent" can be achieved in a very low carbon impact lifestyle if people's psychological and health needs are met. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R-jz86gMiHw

I'm a big fan of his (in 60 Days & Counting one of his characters describes the American system as one that only looks affluent, because irrelevant toys are cheap while basic needs are rationed tightly) and I do think that one of the Green movement(s)' projects is to redefine "the good life" - or, reclaim affluence.

I guess I'm saying I'm with Joyce, but Adapting is OK with me too.

Stephanie said...

I like "Adaptable", but after reading a paper on how English came to be the standard of comparison for other countries trying to become "developed", I wanted to pull this quote from the paper in defense of Affluence: "Those of us who have had teh unique good fortune to have had English as our mother tongue are paid, as it were, a huge imperial dividend every day of our lives, simply because of the lucky coincidence that our native tongue has become the language of imperium." (James C. Scott, Yale University. The paper is unpublished as of yet, hopefully it will be in the next few months. Currently titled "Vernaculars Cross-dressed as Universals: Globalization as North Atlantic Hegemony").

Thoughts?

Green Bean said...

Thank you everyone for your ideas. A poll will go up soon with all the ideas I could fit and the original Affluent/All People. I have a limit of 7 so unfortunately couldn't fit everyone's ideas. I put in those that seemed to get the most feedback here. Thank you again!!

Joost Hoogstrate said...

How about ‘Am positively living sustainably’. Each one is affluent in own way. In fact the most affluent person in your life is you. You have the most control over yourself as no other human in the face of the planet has. That is perhaps why we need to think straight and live right. Please, visit http://climatarians.org to find more…

As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he…
Joost Hoogstrate

Blogmaster said...

how to live green, practical advice and tips only..no bs

Garden Lily said...

What about "American People Living Sustainably"? Or are you trying for a bigger reach?

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