Maxed out 

Quest for Sustainability, after a stop at Canadian Tire

After painstaking research, a pallid attempt at meditation interrupted by the incessant interplay of flies and sore knees, some enlightened conversations and what I believe is known scientifically as a wildass guess, I believe I have the answer to the burning question we’ve all been asking.

“What question is that?” I hear you mutter.

The question is: What exactly is standing in the way of our reaching sustainability nirvana?

It’s clearly not our lack of planning. We have The Plan. If it were only a matter of planning, we’d have been sustainable so long ago people would be scratching their heads wondering why we hadn’t vanished entirely by now.

It is, likewise, clearly not our lack of desire. Who wants to be sustainable more than we do? That’s a rhetorical question. No one can possibly be more desirous of that most noble of goals.

“Is it lack of political leadership?” you ask. Heretic! Maybe we’ll come back to that.

“Well, dammit, what is it?” Getting testy, are we?

It’s Canadian Tire.

Canadian Tire is keeping us from becoming truly sustainable. Sad, but true.

I know. I know. Taking on a Canadian icon that generally ranks closely behind Tim Hortons and beavers and laying our sustainable woes at its corporate door is a tough pill to swallow. And it has to be said I don’t really have anything against Canadian Tire. Oh there have been those instances where power tools carrying their brand have mysteriously malfunctioned well before what I would have considered their useful life. And there have been repeated, pesky problems trying to return things, only to discover there is no real Customer Service desk anywhere in the store. And there have been an unseemly number of instances where all the stores I tried seemed to be completely out of whatever sale item I’d gone there to buy… no rain checks, sucker. But hey, let’s not split hairs here. I’m willing to give any store where a prospective bride and groom can register for cutlery, air compressors and utility trailers the benefit of the doubt.

And it’s not as though Canadian Tire stands alone in preventing us from reaching sustainability. It’s just that they’re so good at it. They make it easy to be unsustainable. Hell, with approved credit, they’ll even put it on a pay-as-you-backslide plan.

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