...Smoothing out the edges.
It sure is hard to maintain one's sense of humor in these dire times. I woke up thinking about people in countries that are not so well of as us and got to thinking that it is them who have it much better than us in almost every way. What! Is this guy nuts? How could that work...how could those that have so little have so much? Oh, I get it; this is going to be one of those meek inheriting the Earth thingies. Naw, not really. It's going to be an entrepreneurial thingie. These people in other lands, and indeed some of them here in our own land, who are not so well of as some of the others already know how to successfully do without some of the dross that is strangles so many. What has happened is that you look in your kitchen, your garage or anywhere and you begin to see lots of stuff stuff that if you think about it, ain't gonna go away none too quickly. It's made of plastic or alloys or who-knows-what and it's stuff that will just take so durn long to dissolve...and while it's dissolving its going to produce all sorts of nasties, outgassings and derivatives while poisoning other things that it starts to come in contact with. Now you can image all the other houses on your street and streets in your town and towns in your states and so an and so an and you get part of the picture. All these house have stuff too. The meeker I referred to earlier do not have this problem because they never acquired all this dross to begin with but they want to and we are moving as a global entity towards producing it for them. Maybe a good thing, maybe not a good thing. Anyway, you do all the math and you will see it isn't going to work...no way, no how. All the "stuff" we make cost us sustainable Earth material...it is made up of Earth materials and changed into a form that can't be put back to what it once was...it is chemically changed. I read an estimate that it takes 40,000 lbs of Earth stuff to come up with the materials necessary to make one laptop computer. One laptop computer. Yikes. We could use this one lone laptop to perhaps compute the consequences of a life of excess. Population. I don't know how you feel, but I live in a moderately sparse population area and I feel squeezed. Too many people starting to crowd in, bringing their stuff with them, building bigger homes to store their sacred and renting storage space somewhere else when the house fills up. Aquifers and body wastes and chemical seepage all getting dangerously close to each other. It's one thing when the population of the Earth is a couple of thousand and it doubles, but what happens when people number in the billions and that number doubles and then doubles again? Do you see where this number is headed. I think of it as 25 pregnant chain cigar smokers crowded into a small closed room with one small glass of water on the table and there are only 17 chairs and they can't leave to room to go the toilet and they are using the water for an astray and they keep on smoking and no windows can be opened. Cough, hack, wheeze. I could go on but this is an upbeat article. A personal goal of mine is to get everything that is produced from this moment in history onward produced with its ultimate demise in mind. One of the hottest things I heard about in the past few years were starch-based paper plates and bowls that could be put into a compost pile and turned back into Earth matter..not a bad start. Why can't everything be like that? There's a man in Georgia who owns the world's largest manufacturing operation for industrial carpeting and his company is starting to take responsibility for it's product from conception to grave. He is probably one of the most responsible and advanced entrepreneurs in the United States and through these endeavors his company still remains profitable. I'm not advocating grass huts with dirt floors, but pulling back somewhat to save the species ain't all that bad an idea, especially when you consider the alternative. It's a good time to get on board now, and be ahead of the life-eco saving curve cycle before it becomes another misguided government mandated fad. God forbid, that if during the common shoulder-to-shoulder effort of trying to turn this runaway train around we should accidentally globally unite and bond with one another and become friendly and stop wars hatred, and out of control taxation and so on and so forth... This is where the pitch for using one's imagination comes into play. Someone has to pioneer all these future technologies and philosophies and the field is going to be wide open. If you have the strength and imagination to come up with new technologies, then it may be an opportune time for you to step forward. ...look at this will you, lunchtime. Time for my bowl of Chicken Little soup. Hey!, is that one of the "Greenware" bowls over there on the counter?
J. Jules Vitali is a sculptor, columnist, inadvertent moral philosopher and poet who resides in Freeport, Maine. He is the creator of the art form StyrogamiTM which can be seen on the web at www.styrogami.com. His work can be seen at Zero Station in Portland, Maine or at The International Gallery ofContemporary Art in Anchorage, Alaska for the month of March. He is also an Artist in Cellophane (www.artomat.org).