The mere fact that I sit here at my computer and write into a blog….. that’s an amazing but scary thing. The air conditioner purrs along, keeping me comfortable and my machines free of humidity. The milk for my morning coffee remains cool in the refrigerator and the microwave will reheat my leftovers for lunch in thirty seconds.
Ranger is sitting here looking over my shoulder.
Ranger: “Why is that scary? I kinda like not getting wet in a rainstorm, and don’t mind at all sleeping through the night in a cool bedroom.”
Me: “Yes. Me too! Darryl and I will not blow up the air conditioner or stop doing laundry just because we’re scared of the ecological disaster happening everywhere in the world. But we constantly remind ourselves of our shoplifting habits, and resolve to do better each day.”
Ranger: “Come on, lady. Enough of this talk. Knowing both of you, you’ve never so much as lifted a pack of gum from a store!”
Me: “Right. What we are shoplifting are resources that rightfully belong to my great-grandchildren. American lifestyles, which I suspect are the envy of most of the planet’s nine billion people, would require somewhere around seven extra planet Earths in order to satisfy. Let’s imagine going out into the Universe and lassoing seven other planets and tugging them into our orbit so they can be utilized and colonized by all the folks who want to live like us. Or, if we can’t find seven, we could find three and then tell all those aspiring up-and-comers that they can only live like Europeans. BUT, if we can’t find those extra planets, we’ll have to come back and just tell everyone, even ourselves, that we need to live like people in what is called the developing world.”
Ranger: “So what does it really matter to you? Why not just enjoy what you can, and be thankful you were born an American during a period of prosperity and increasing technologic knowhow. Why not just trust that that same technology that allows you to put all those words out on the internet will figure out either how to find those extra planets or transform food production so that presto…. everyone really CAN live like us.”
Me: “Unfortunately, once we know about the issues related to climate change we cannot turn our backs. We are at a tipping point. What I desperately want to know is this: if we can find other planets to lasso and tie to Earth, will they have Yellowstone parks? Will the Grand Tetons, or something close, be found? If so, good, because Yellowstone restores much of what we are longing for, and we’d be the first to sign up for the move.”