Saturday, April 26, 2008
Earth Day & Arbor Day
I realized Tuesday while reading some other blogs that I totally blew off Earth Day. I also blew off Arbor Day on Friday. I guess I’m not watching the calendar closely enough!
Then again, shouldn’t every day be both Earth Day and Arbor Day? When should we not be thinking about trees, about the health of the planet?
Fortunately, city life lends itself to environmentally-friendly lifestyles. We’re all crammed into tiny apartments (well, except for the hedge fund managers among us), and we walk everywhere. Many of us don’t own cars. We can’t consume much stuff, because we don’t have the space for it.
I took an online test one time, and my carbon footprint is pretty darn tiny. My weak spot is probably traveling, consuming my share of jet fuel. And restaurants, I suppose -- importing God-knows-what from the ends of the Earth.
While I can’t exactly go out and plant a tree, I can at least take care of the ones we’ve got. The back yard of my building has a small maple coming up, right in the middle of the yard -- it promises to be a nice tree in future years, with plenty of room to grow. We also have several roses-of-sharon, smaller trees that have nice flowers in summer. I hereby pledge to defend them against any and all hostile forces!
(Photo: Benches near government buildings in lower Manhattan, March 2008)
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The purple-green benches are fabulous!
As for saving the planet, well, it doesn't need saving. A bunch of species are currently becoming extinct, same as it ever was. Are humans to blame? Well ... yes. For our cleverness, for our drive and motivation to make life "better" (and the resulting fallout from that). Mostly it's because there are so many of us, but that happens on this planet. It's common for a species to overpopulate and cause changes in the environment.
In many ways we aren't special at all, and therefore it's not worth all the self-loathing we put ourselves through.
That said, I, too, am a person without much stuff or money. i don't own a car, blah blah blah. Does that make me better than others who have more money and stuff? I always wonder!
Have a great weekend. See you next week!!
Reya: It's not a matter of being "better" than people with more stuff or money -- at least, I don't THINK so. I think it's just a matter of being aware. Many people are so amazingly unaware.
And while you're right about the cycles of nature, etc., I think we humans have a special responsibility to police ourselves and our behavior, given our comparatively highly evolved brains.
I find the notion of stewardship is so important and powerful "While I can’t exactly go out and plant a tree, I can at least take care of the ones we’ve got"....right on steve!!
love love love the picture - my two favorite colors purple and green!
You can always hitch a ride to the country and plant a tree-- !
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