Lean, Green, Athletic Machines

The Olympics just got a little greener.

With offshore drilling debates at an all-time political high, it goes without saying that the hunt for oil has never looked so grim. However, there’s another global crisis that nobody’s talking about: the colored-awareness-rubber-bracelet crisis. Now that we’ve depleted the Crayola 64, we’ve exhausted our supply of colors that denote specific causes that no one can remember. (It seems www.rubber-bracelets.com hasn’t received the memo; just steal any cause’s color and make it your own. Sorry, Lance!)

But wait. Just when you thought offshore color-drilling would be the only way to resolve this problem, a solution has landed on your doorstep: shoelaces! GreenLaces‘ mission is to “unify environmentally conscious individuals and leverage athletics to reduce our environmental impact.” Yep, you heard right. Not only can we expand the color-awareness market into new industries by capitalizing on old technologies (shoelaces), we can also reduce our environmental impact by performing athletics. Peruse this list of green-laced pledge-makers, and you’ll see what kind of innovative ways people plan to make change. Pledge #53: “I, Koula Strosnider, promise to not litter the plastic I tear off my new pack of cigarettes.” Great, thanks!

Brooklyn smokers aside, GreenLaces is currently holding court in a more dignified manner at the Beijing Olympics. Look for green as it whizzes past on the screen; more than a few U.S. athletes will be wearing them, with some Swedes and Australians to boot. (Click here for a complete list of participating athletes.) As an added bonus, Brandi Chastain, 1999 U.S. Women’s World Cup champion and feminist fatale of the infamous “sports bra incident,” has just joined GreenLaces’ Board of Directors. So, while it’s not surprising that the Women’s Soccer Team is currently the largest contingent sporting the beguiling green, we’re impressed that Jamie Schroeder and Tom Paradiso of the Men’s Rowing Team have pledged to wear them. We thought rowing shoes were Velcro.

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