Thursday, April 22, 2010
It’s Earth Day…a time to reflect on our planet, our spaceship, Gaia
Sometimes I’m overwhelmed by all the things I could be doing to protect the environment. Maybe I’m too busy, overworked or just lazy. Or maybe I am underestimating the aggregate of all the little things done by many individuals. A few examples: I use a cloth shopping bag, and I wash my clothes in cold water—unless they’re really dirty—on the short cycle (no reference to my height). I recycle. I set the dishwasher on “air dry” most of the time, and run fans rather than the air conditioner til the Houston climate gets the best of me. I walk whenever possible, rather than rely on my car to take me short distances, but I’ve been known to waste gas driving around the block just to hear the end of a song. Of course I use a fountain pen, since ten billion non-degradable disposable plastic pens are tossed into landfills each year worldwide. I can proudly say that not one of them is mine, but there might be a disposable razor or two with my fingerprints. While none of these attempts at living consciously is a big deal, if you multiply any one of them by thousands of people doing the same or similar things, exponential change is the result.
As I review all this, I find two glaring points: I am grateful for having choices, when much of the world does not. And I am humbled by how much room I have for improvement. Oh yeah, number three: always use a good pen.