How much you care about the environment is the new which-way-the-toilet-paper-hangs, according to this New York Times story.

In it, couples around the country report bickering over bringing reusable bags to the grocery store and tiffs about the proper way to recycle their toilet water.

"The reason green issues can seem so contentious is because, at their core, they're about morals," says MNN's Katherine Butler, in another story about more couples caught between the great green divide.

In other words, if you're a treehugger hooking up with an SUV lover, you're going to need to think James Carville / Mary Matalin to make things work.


But even if your viewpoints aren't that extreme, take it from me, there can be ... debate. My husband is more the "wear five sweaters so we don't have to turn on the heat" kind of green (ahem, cheapskate), while I hail from the "let's buy grass-fed beef even if it costs a little more" school of eco-thought.

We're both all about saving the planet, it's just that sometimes it seems like we're saving, you know, really different planets.

But I'll admit, if I were single today, I'd take a second date with a "light green" guy over one who thinks green is what you use to tip in restaurants, because things are just less work when your big-picture values line up.

What do you think: Just how green does your Mr. Right need to be to make the cut?

Virginia Sole-Smith is an environmental journalist whose work has appeared in Glamour, Good Housekeeping and The New York Times. She and her husband are in the midst of a "light green" renovation using no-VOC paint and a programmable thermostat. For more, check out www.virginiasolesmith.com.