19 June 2006

1000 pounds

when i was eight, this book rocked my world:

i read it cover to cover, even mining it for a couple of science fair projects. something was in the air during second grade - so much so that for years i suspected earth day had been established in 1990. only such a monumental event could explain my sudden environmental fervor.

eventually the passion subsided. i still turn lights off when i leave a room, dump hundreds of pages of scripts into the blue bin at work, and love the idea of alternative energy sources, but i'm not the eight-year-old maniac i once was. we don't recycle at home, and when i'm miserly with my air conditioning, it's for worrying about the electric bill. but then, this weekend, something happened. al gore.*

by now you've surely heard about an inconvenient truth. i don't think i need to tell you anything about it. but i will tell you to go see it. first of all, it's a good, well-made, engaging movie. and second, even if you think you know, even if you think you're convinced, go see it.** at one point gore points out how easily, how quickly so many of us go from disbelief to despair - "oh that's baloney" ... "it's all true and there's nothing we can do!" if you've seen the movie but haven't gone to the website,*** do it now: www.climatecrisis.net.

on the do something section of the website, it lets you calculate your personal impact, the amount of co2 you put into the atmosphere. (we're talking cars and airplanes, not exhalation.) god bless living poor and single in nyc, because i end up at 1000 lbs per year, well below the national average of 15,000 lbs. but i still think "carbon neutral" is a beautiful phrase. i mean, i'm not throwing out my air conditioner or anything, but there are things to do. do them.

*for the record, i have always really liked al gore. it really pisses me off that he basically lost the election because of this cockamamie idea that he's "stiff" and "wooden," an idea perpetrated entirely by the media. (god, i just said "cockamamie" and "perpetrated by the media." what have i come to?) when everyone and their mother were all 'al gore's stiff' and 'all gore's a robot,' i was all 'really?' i never saw it with my own eyes - kerry was ten times stiffer and more awkward. but it's just this idea that people latched onto, taking it as fact. but i've always found him really likeable. and i always enjoy a chance to point out that i was right.

**when i tried to proselytize my dad on sunday he was all "i know, i know" and "there's nothing we can do - people don't care!" and this is saddening and frustrating and i don't know what to say to him when he says that.

***let this and x-men 3 teach us all to stay through the credits


Pioneer Woman said...

Not saying anything about ol' Al's politics, but I have to say that I arrived at the "plastic" and "wooden" conclusion before ever hearing it in the media. I'm sure he's not like that in real life, among his kids, etc., but his stiffness was a real distraction for me in the public forum.

I will try the movie, though!

Jeremy said...

So we value the easy-going, laid-back delivery of horrible ideas over the more formal delivery of great ones? Do we expect from our presidents the same attitude we do from our reality TV show contestants? (Oh, right, I forgot, we do.)