The Makeover Continues...

Category: , By Christian
I'm still getting settled into my office and giving it some of that much-envied CDoubleDizzle flavor that everyone has come to know and love. It has been a gradual process, but I think that we're finally getting to a point where this is certainly my space. In addition to the previously mentioned Vietnam National Soccer jersey, we also have: family pics, a french press, snacks, my college diploma, some keepsakes from my last job and a slew of books. The books are a pretty big deal, because we needed to get them out of the house. One of my goals is that someday we will have a library in our house that has an abundance of bookcases that are built into the walls. Until that point in time, I will be forced to split my literature collection due to space constraints in our home. I don't really mind however, because one can only read so many books at once.

Today I put up the finishing decorative touch, and it's amazing. We celebrated Christmas with my in-laws this past weekend, and one of my gifts was some coffee. As a self-proclaimed coffee addict/snob, I have a bit of an ethical problem. I do not enjoy cheap coffee, and even nicer coffees are often harvested in such a way that is economically disadvantageous to the coffee growers. The result is that I feel compelled to drink coffee that is harvested in ways that are fair and allow farmers some economic viability.

Problem: such coffee isn't cheap, and I'm not rich.

Solution: when people ask what I want for a gift, I request a socially-responsible gift. In this case, Fair Trade coffee.

When my father-in-law visited the Coffee Merchant in Wichita they struck up what sounds to be a lengthy conversation. One thing led to another, and the merchant ended up giving my father-in-law a burlap coffee sack in addition to the few bags of coffee he purchased for me. This is a sweet bag, because it is from the Women's Coffee Association. This bag was used to ship 45kg of raw coffee beans from Columbia where it was picked by a group of 20 women who have joined together to cut out the middle-man and thus find economic sustainability in the coffee market.

With it's two vertical pink stripes on either side of a slender aqua stripe, it looks cool and it hangs well. But more than that, it's a symbol. It's a reminder that there are people out there who are trying to go against the system. The system undercuts them by taking advantage of people and thus competing with lower prices, but the system is only helping the rich get richer. The sack is partially about my love for coffee, but it's more about a reminder for me to join the downtrodden in the struggle. It's about how God's heart for the poor should effect what I pour into my cup. It's about a call as members of the Empire to flex our muscles and use our buying power to level things out across the globe before we put so much stress on the rest of the world that we cause the whole thing to bust apart at the seams.

Fair Dinkum

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