Sunday, November 4, 2012

Mai Moua's Green Challenge Week #1

Mai Moua Vang
Blog #1

Inside source:
Ava L. McCall. “Speaking through Cloth: Teaching Hmong History and Culture through Textile Arts.” Reader

Outside source:
Fairchild, Caroline. "Black Friday 2012 Deals: What Not To Buy This Year." The Huffington Post., 08 Oct. 2012. Web. 04 Nov. 2012. 

Paj ntaub is one of the prettiest material that I have ever seen. It's is bright, intricate, complex, crisp designs, and holds my people's language, history, and culture. In the article, it mentioned Hmong mothers wanting their daughters to sew paj ntaub in order to pass and preserve the practice. After reading this, I reflected on my experience with my mother. For a short period, when I was 6-7 years old, my mother tried teaching me how to sew the simple "x"s on an blank fabric. I attempted this for a few months and I stopped. Looking back at it, I wonder why my mother didn't encourage me to pursue this tradition. After all, I was only a young child who didn't have any responsibilities. 

Now that I'm 20, my mother continues to sew paj ntaub but she doesn't do it all the time. I don't really know what she is sewing and making them into (i.e. a pair of pants, top, wraps) because I have limited knowledge of it. At the moment, this saddens me because I can't write more about it but I believe I can expand my knowledge before it's too late.

So it's November and Thanksgiving is around the corner. One of the best meals lands in this month, and so does Black Friday. American consumers love paying for something at a cheaper price and some will do anything to get the desired items. This article states that the best deals are quickly moving on the cyber net, which have its pros and cons. 

Pros: less violent customers, more manageable lines 
Cons: money isn't going to the city, in-store employees aren't getting paid, consumerism spreads more quickly via Internet

From the list above, I want to stress on the last con because sales, such as Black Friday, fuels consumerism and the Internet worsens it. According to, 40% of their consumers have already started working on their Black Friday list before the month of November arrives. Consumers can strategically think of their shopping list because Ebay, Amazons, and other websites release their Black Friday deals in advance hence they can lock in their customers' money before other companies. Since there is so much competition online, it's difficult for stores that are down the street to compete.

Update on the compact challenge:
So far I haven't purchased anything from retail stores as I spent my weekend at the beach. At the moment I want to get a haircut but I am unsure if it's ok in this challenge. I have been thinking about Black Friday but I'm resisting the urge to look at online deals as they would only tempt me. I'm pretty self-discipline so I know this urge will pass. Looking back at my bank account, it shows me that I hardly use my debit card to buy new stuff. Mainly I spend my money on groceries and occasionally take-outs for nights I don't have time to cook. Since I'm a college student, I don't have a lot of disposable money to buy new things. I'm also very busy with school so I don't have a good reason to buy an outfit knowing that the events I attend are study sessions. Yay study sessions! You keep my money in my pocket! 

I won't be dealing with this hectic-ness after Thanksgiving! I will be sleeping cozily in my bed.

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