Monday, July 31, 2006
I just feel stuck sometimes
Her new hero, Pat Ferri of Wreckage-O-Rama, gave Annabel a clown nose of her very own. And though she won't wear it she also won't let it out of her sight. Her favorite thing to do with her "nose," is to hang it from the dimmer switch in the dining room, and use it as she might a sling shot.
Often the motion of drawing it back by the bulbous red orb and letting go doesn't bring about the desired result. Instead of flying through the air and smacking me square in the eye, the gag appendage just wraps around the post tighter. No laughter ensues.
That's kind of how I felt this weekend when dinner and a movie turned into dinner and a documentary.
Jed WANTED to see this film, and I wanted to AVOID this film, but in the end An Inconvenient Truth won out.
See my husband and I are on the same page when it comes to the science of global warming. We each believe that the way we live now is killing the planet. We each believe there are things we can do as individuals to mimize our impact on this Earth. But where we disagree is our personal reaction to the information as presented.
Even before the film, Jed was ready to install solar panels and a wood-fired boiler to reduce our dependance on oil. Even before the film, we were shutting off lights and recycling. With the cost of petroleum through the roof, we've been cutting out unnecessary travel. He's even considering the consequences of his trip into Chatham with Annabel for an ice cream.
But where he is seeking out the things we can do, I look at what we can't do and what we won't be doing: We can't give up Jed's big diesel engine rigs, after all they are how he makes his money; I am still going to drive more than 50 miles a day (after all, that's how I make my living and keep our health benefits); We are still going to be burning wood, it alleviates our dependence on oil but it still puts carbon into the air; we are still going to live in a suburb where driving is necessary for virtually all trips.
In a nutshell, he is optimistic and I, apparently, throw in the towel.
I don't think that my shutting off the lights and deciding not to go to yoga on Sundays (75 miles round-trip) will do as much to save the planet as the people at the TOP finding alternatives to gasoline-powered cars, not to mention coal- and oil-fired energy plants.
But it's not that I'm throwing up my hands and saying "global warming be damned, pass the Hummer." It's not as if I were saying just let the lights burn day and night. I just think putting the onus on the individual is in the same family as "Just Say No" was in the War on Drugs. It just ain't enough.
So as we bickered all the way home, I just felt more an more helpless. "Look at the mess we're in," I scream. "We have people in our own country who are still homeless a year after Katrina; we have a government that squanders and misuses it's place at the helm and then tells us we need less of it; we have corporations guaranteed individual rights and there are people who can't afford to eat decent food, let alone buy a hybrid car. Why are we pushing hybrids anyway? Why aren't we looking past oil altogether? Why? because there's still enough oil for the people in power to make a killing. They don't care that it won't last forever or that it's killing the planet because it will last for now and when the planet implodes they won't be around to clean it up."
Maybe I'm missing the point. In all reality, I'm sure I am. But I can't help but think the world needs people like both of us: I'll be the letter-writer and he'll be the one who turns off the lights. And we will tip the balance eventually.
Of course, as we agree that we are, in truth, of the same mind when it comes to the issue at hand, I can't help but fume at the nice evening lost in argument.
"THIS WOULDN'T HAVE HAPPENED AT ALL, YOU KNOW, IF WE'D SEEN 'THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA'."
Posted by toyfoto at 1:28 PM