As I walked into the office of the program director of an environmental awareness organization in Toronto, I was surprised that there was no recycling bin. ‚ I was even more surprised to see several recyclable materials, like papers and water bottles, in the garbage can underneath his desk.
This, in one fell swoop, took away the interviewee’s credibility as an advocate for a cleaner, greener Toronto. ‚ The guy doesn’t even recycle. ‚ Why am I going to listen to him tell me why other Torontonians should? ‚ Talk about hypocrisy.
I didn’t include his testimony in my article, even though several of his quotes were very, very good. ‚ It just didn’t feel right to include his advice.
After talking to him, I walked down the tiny halls to talk to someone else. ‚ She was just as nice and helpful, however, she too had no recycling bin in her office. As if that wasn’t bad enough, she too had recyclable materials in her waste bin.
After interviewing her, I went to the lobby and sat on one of the couches, which was made of organic fabrics. ‚ As I waited for my next interview with one of the executives at the organization, I asked the receptionist why there were no recycling bins in some of the offices on the floor.
“Well, we haven’t gotten around to picking them up yet. ‚ It is high up on our list of things to do” she said.
“When do you think you will be getting them in?” I asked.
“Maybe a week or two” she answered.
“How long have you been at this location?” I asked. ‚ I could tell my questions were making her uncomfortable. ‚ But hey, I’m a journalist. ‚ It’s what I do.
“We’ve been here for about a year” she answered, very reluctantly.
I looked at her for a second, thanked her and walked back to the couch. ‚ I sat down for about a minute before the executive came out.
I asked him about the bins and he gave me the same answer. ‚ I also asked him why there were recyclable materials in the garbage bins in some of the offices. ‚ He just smiled and said “you journalists.” ‚ He got up, thanked me and walked away.
I find it funny that this guy tried to turn the blame on me. ‚ He’s the one in charge of an environmental awareness organization that throws recyclable materials in the trash. And I’m the bad guy. ‚ Sure.