Well before Michelle Obama starting telling our kids what to eat for lunch, we parents underwent our own version of big government oversight, whether it was preparing for the switch to the metric system, training on provisioning of nuclear fallout shelters, or surviving the imminent dangers of global cooling. Despite the success of these programs, we were misinformed about water conservation. You see, we were told that when brushing our teeth, it was important to shut off the water because leaving the water running would "waste water"; and of course I, quite possibly like you, believed this line. When I was older, I realized that the water cycle is a "closed loop" where water from the faucet, upon entering the drain, would transit the treatment plant, be cleaned, and discharged into the Ohio River ready for all the fine folks in Cincinnati to use as they see fit. What we were really wasting by leaving the water running was the electrical power to pump the well water up to the water tower, as well as the energy to run the effluent plant.