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Stuff: The Secret Lives of Everyday Things by Alan Thein Durning, John C. Ryan

Stuff tells how the things that fill our lives — coffee and newspapers, T-shirts and hamburgers — are made. It traces athletic shoes, cars, French fries, colas back to their origins. And computers. The stuff-trails are fascinating, but not pretty.

The authors do not intend to send us on guilt trips instead of shopping trips. They don't expect us to unplug our computers or bury our cars or "bite into some hot, salty fries and think about farmworkers' children with blue baby syndrome." They just want us to understand our world, and to use its products thoughtfully.

They talk about a sign in the Seattle Ship Canal that warns boaters, "No Wake." That's impossible, Ryan and Durning point out — you can't move a boat without creating waves that rock other boats. They prefer another sign that says, "Watch Your Wake. Wish Everyone Did!"


ISBN: 1886093040

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