Sunday, April 22, 2007
Ordinarily, Earth Day passes, only for me to realize a few days after the fact that, in its honor, I should've dumped a few quarts of motor oil into a pond somewhere and enjoyed the dazzling colors from the resulting oil slick. Hippies like rainbows, too, right?
But this year, it seemed like every stinking section of the paper had something annoying to say about this wannabe religious holiday for the Church of Gaia. In particular, a list of "Earth Day Tips" (See below.) from the print edition of the Houston Chronicle irritated me enough that I decided to dedicate the evening barbecue I was already planning to Earth Day. The festivities started with me using a crumpled up piece of that rag in my chimney starter to light off my charcoal.
First of all, for my Earth Day checklist, with my comments [in brackets]:
Turn off your computer. (Electronics on standby use 75 percent of electricity.) [Based on what? Besides, how the hell am I going to blog this without a computer? Damn the electrons! Full speed ahead.]
- Get a programmable thermostat. [Our house comes with one. I like it only because it saves me money.]
Use compact fluorescent bulbs. [I prefer incandescents. Next.] Go solar. [Go to hell. Next.] Turn off the faucet. (A low-flow shower head along with faucet aerators can save nearly 8000 gallons of water a year.) [8,000 gallons of water costs me approximately oh, I don't know -- diddly-squat. I'll continue taking real showers. And, oh yeah, I own a few custom-made full-flow shower heads I can install should I find myself moving to some hippie enclave any time in the future. You know, all this low-flow shower malarkey reminds me of Ayn Rand saying something about hippies being able to pollute a stream simply by stepping into one.... But back to the point: I'll use whatever water I damn well please and I'll turn it off when I don't need to use it. Capisce? ]
- Check your tires. (Improve gas mileage by 3 percent or more.) [I do this already, and not because of what some sanctimonious environmentalist twit (I may have misspelled that.) wants me to do. The life you save may be your own.]
Shop Smart. (Avoid plastic bags.) [Bugger off. Next.] Eat Less Meat. (U.N. says the industry generates about 18 percent of greenhouse gases.) [And.... New Effin' York strip steaks, baby! Deeeeee-lish! Buh-bye, Kofi!] Watch that packaging. (Recycle.) [Am I the only one left in America who finds being patronized and being addressed in the imperative mood extremely offensive? In any event, since recycling wastes the ultimate "non-renewable" resource, my time, it's not happening unless it happens to save me significant money to do so, as in when I wash clothes or dishes.] Eat Local. (Avoid shipping costs.) [Also avoid: variety, a balanced diet, economies of scale, and above all, thinking for yourself. Newp!]
And I added to my carbon footprint by grilling with "filthy-burning" charcoal (You're only pretending to grill if you're using gas -- especially on Earth Day.) and by imbibing a tasty Maredsous 8 (as shown at right, including the special glass) as I waited for the coals to whiten and enjoyed reading what I like to think of as the "antidote" to "the right virus". You know, if these global-thinking, local-acting, life-hating Purityrannical morons ever did anything fun, they'd know that beer was carbonated and probably attempt to outlaw it.
Aside from not having a picture of this momentous occasion to post here for your enjoyment, I only regret that no matter what I did, my "carbon footprint" was probably still not big enough to blacken a substantial amount of the surface area of the seat of Al Gore's pants.
The Earth is valuable only to the extent that we can live happy lives on it. If we're going to have an "Earth Day", that's what it ought to be about. And that's why I fired up the barbie today.
PS: I feel (even) better, now!
Today: I completely forgot to mention this amusing and quite apropos article....
One finding from Fraser's research has already generated a national stir. The study found low but significant concentrations of fatty acids generated from cooking meat on an open grill. Driven by Houston's image as a barbecue hot spot, news reports citing the link between barbecuing and air pollution circulated nationwide.Bwahahaha!
4-23-07: (1) One minor edit. (2) Added note on disposal of newspaper.