Sit ready, my friends, sit ready.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

I like to think of myself as someone who is a "believer" in climate change, and someone who makes the right choices and takes the right actions to support that belief.

The fact of the matter is, I'm a fake.  I'm bullshitting myself.  I'm letting myself off the hook.  I have been telling myself that I know that climate change exists, and it's a problem, and I've changed my light bulbs to CFLs and rode my bike to work some (last year), so I'm doing what I can.  This problem is just so much bigger than me, what can I do?  Nobody else gives a shit.  It's inevitable.  I'll just go look at Pinterest.  Maybe play a game.  Read a book.  Work late.  Eat too much.  Stare at reality television.  Distract myself.

I am the problem.

I have been passively sitting by, pretending my hands are tied, feeling hopeless. Powerless.

While I'm doing that, what haven't I been doing?  Making changes.  Speaking up.  Participating in the process, engaging with all levels of our government.  Holding them accountable.  The fact is, I do have power - the power of my voice.  The power of my actions.  The power of my life.

I am right - my power is not enough.  But maybe my power can get someone else to take action too.  And maybe if they can get someone... Maybe eventually there will be enough power.

I have been sleepwalking.  We are all sleepwalking together. 
Today I am stirring.  I am realizing that I can use my voice to try to wake people up... But...  It requires something hard.  It requires work.  It requires commitment.  It requires that I stop letting myself off the hook.  I have to take ownership of my power.  I have to take action.

I have to take (gasp!) personal responsibility.

It's easier to look away, to ignore the problem.  It's easier to be helpless.  John said "it's not going to change until people are uncomfortable."  

Is that it?  Is that what is needed? I have a question for you.

How uncomfortable are the people who lost everything in the wildfires that spread across the western half of America?

How uncomfortable are the farmers whose crops are withering on the vine because there is no rain (not uncomfortable enough, with government subsidies, maybe)?

How uncomfortable are the cattlemen, who are having to slaughter and sell their cows (beef is cheap right now, my friends!) because they can't provide them with food?

When is it enough?

Your house didn't burn.  You're not a farmer or a cattleman. When the produce shelves are empty and food prices are so high you can't afford to feed your kids, is that when you'll be uncomfortable?

Think about something for me.  What are you doing with your power?

...Oh, your reality show is coming on right now?

Maybe later?


I'm going to the Climate Leadership training in California next month and would love the opportunity to give the climate presentation to your group after I'm trained.  Leave a comment with your contact information if you are interested.

In the meantime, I recommend you read this piece, join & the Climate Reality Project and use your power.

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat."
- Theodore Roosevelt

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

I Double Dare You
by Pavi Mehta

the edges of things are always deceptive.
because we are taught to believe
in endings and beginnings.

but the truth is:
There Are No Borders.

and all boundaries are lines
drawn in the imagination
(like the equator)

people like to put things
in their places.

(we believe in belonging

this is the problem with

(it does not understand

and it will not be put in place.

with crayons on paper maybe
but who can live life strictly

the color of countries that
cannot be contained
in cliches where-

the red of your heart spills
into the red of the rose spills
into the red of the sunset spills
into mehendi on the hands of a bride.

and who can explain these things?

but what i want to know is simple:

who settled the sky on top of the mountain
and who drew the restless margins of the sea?

everything flows into everything

like a picture drawn without once
lifting pencil from paper;
this world.

now tell me the story of your life
(whoever you are) go on
i Double Dare you!

tell me the story of your life
without once touching

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