Photo: Katya Litvinenko TreeShagger is now the official name of our green dating column, as it trounced Treefucker in last week’s poll. Thanks to everyone who voted! If you’ve got green dating questions, send ‘em our way.
You know what they say: If you want to pick up a climate hawk, you gotta learn to fly. (Or something. No, this is not the time to get your pilot’s license.) If you’re tired of choking down wheatgrass-and-vodkas at your local hipster bar, or you have a permanent eye twitch from winking at cuties during yoga, I will teach you where to find a suitable green lover.
Farmers markets. There’s something to be said for feigning an interest in soil-encrusted vegetable bulbs. You can engage in corny double entendre with the grower, for instance (melons! O ho ho!), or “accidentally” brush the hand of a fellow bok choy lover. Fighting over the last leek is even considered an aphrodisiac in some cultures. (Yes, The Last Leek is going to be the title of my memoir.) But you want love in your canvas bag today, my friend, not just vegetables — so keep your eyes on the prize.
CSAs and co-ops. Maybe farmers markets aren’t your thang (too many tambourines, right?). Consider joining a CSA (community-supported agriculture), advises Grist Cities Editor Sarah Goodyear. As a CSA member, you’ll pay for a weekly box of seasonal farm bounty from roughly June to December. You might pick the boxes up from a central location where you can rub elbows with other locavores, and you might even be called upon to work a shift or two. (Central Brooklyn’s CSA has volunteers deliver the produce boxes to other members or help at a soup kitchen.) Better yet, join and volunteer for shifts at a natural-foods co-op (like Brooklyn’s hardcore Park Slope Co-Op). You’ll have an excuse to literally check out other members if you work at the cash register.
Green mixers, fairs, and networking events. Green Drinks is a happy hour for peeps into sustainability, in roughly 730 cities worldwide. Find one nearby or start your own, but you HAVE TO go alone. (I know. It strikes fear into my heart-pockets too.) If you live in Seattle, San Francisco, L.A., Chicago, or NYC, hit up GreenFest, an annual two-day expo brimming with lots of “soymilk” to “sample,” know what I mean? (You could even volunteer there.) Or find vegetarians and vegans at VegFest, another annual festival that comes to seven cities. There’s also Go To Green LA, Green Edge NYC, and Seattle’s Out for Sustainability. Don’t forget 400-plus sustainability groups on Meetup.com. Live in Hollywood-town? “Try to land a green celebrity at a Global Green event,” advises Grist social maven Hanna Welch. Hey, now that ScarJo’s single …
Broaden your scope. The greenie of your dreams might be into other progressive causes too (reproductive rights, oceans, urban gardening) or might share other interests (home brewing, science, guerrilla knitting) so get involved in groups that light your fire. Volunteer to register people to vote, because nothing’s sexier than democracy. Linger in a bike shop or vegan restaurant. And find cool seminars, lectures, or workshops in your town, like Seattle’s Science with a Twist (nerds with cocktails = dreamy!). Held by the Pacific Science Center, the next Science with a Twist is a pre-Valentine’s shindig called Sultry Science including burlesque, hors d’oeuvres, a “jazz laser show,” and admission to two science center exhibits. Hot!
Outdoor music and art festivals. For a savory blend of hippie and hipster, hit some of the annual music fests around the country. Something about music, alcohol, and tents just brings people together, if you catch my drift. There are approximately one zillion such festivals (so check out this much longer list), but here’s a few to whet your whistle:
- Burning Man
- Where & when: Nevada’s Black Rock Desert, 8/29/11 – 9/5/11
- Who you’ll meet: 50,000 dreadlocked white kids trippin’ on E. Kids in their forties, I mean. Some naked. Brace yourself.
- Why you should go: For the stories. But stay alive, son. There’s some strong shit out there.
- Where & when: Seattle, Labor Day weekend
- Who you’ll meet: Your neighbors, parents, kids, hipsters, everyone on the West Coast.
- Why you should go: There’s a wide range of performers, from small local bands to radio darlings to Bob Dylan. But it’s not just music. There are comedians, author readings, short films, food … plus, you don’t have to camp, and there’s a fairly low new-age crystal factor.
- Where & when: Austin, 3/11/11 – 3/20/11
- Who you’ll meet: “Essentially, the whole downtown area becomes overrun with hipsters,” advises Austin writer Jesse Noyes. “Expect to see a lot of bandanas hanging from back pockets.”
- Why you should go: In addition to over 80 (!) stages, there are hundreds of unofficial shows around the city. But it ain’t just music — panel discussions and speakers are a big part of it too, covering everything from social media to racial issues to moon missions.
Green film fests. These are a beast all their own (like Falkor the pink dragon-dog in Neverending Story, but way less creepy). There’s the Wild & Scenic Film Festival in Nevada City, Calif., as well as festivals in San Francisco, Harrisburg, D.C., and Golden, Colo., to name a few. SOMEbody’s gonna touch fingers in the popcorn bucket, mmm hmm? (Just ma
ke sure they use real butter. And save the tongue-dancing ’til after the movie, OK? Or I will throw my shoe at you.)
So where have you met a green hottie? Spill in the comments!