Thoroughly Thursday - the "Climate Footprint" Edition
Welcome back to the Thoroughly Thursday, the Carbon Footprint Edition. I've been reading a handful of articles about climate change recently (here, here, and here), and I can't say any of them have been "hopeful." TL;DR: The Earth's climate is changing too rapidly to stop, it's going to be a rough ride, and a lot of people will suffer in the coming decades. Perhaps because I live in California, the strange combination of greeny-crunchy aspirations nestled in a gigantic Gordian knot of concrete freeways, my take on environmentalism has always been a bit complicated. I believe in climate science, global warming, and the peril of quickly warming earth, but my day-to-day activities haven't really changed that much in the last decade. I still drive regularly, use my air conditioner with abandon, and love plane travel. I talk about climate change relatively frequently here in TT, but I'm often confused as to what a middle-class, urban father can do that will make a difference. Ride my bike everywhere? Recycle? Don't use straws? Move to a cave?
But, I did find a ray of hope in this opinion piece by climate scientist Peter Kalmus, whose main advice is that, yes, the outlook can seem bleak, but we can't stop looking for and creating new solutions. I realized that perhaps the first place to start was to figure out my family's carbon footprint. There are several calculators online (I used the one provided by the Nature Conservancy) and with a little research, figured out that each member of my family produced an average of 8 metric tons of carbon dioxide each year, about half the American average (yay for us!), but still higher than most people in the European Union (boo!) and far higher than what is necessary to combat climate change (ugh.). However, as an innately competitive person, I'm already devising ways to shrink my own "footprint": smarter energy choices, using more public transportation, researching carbon offsets. But, no cave-dwelling, at least for now. :)
What I'm Listening To - Going on a Bit of a Trip
On the advice of TT-friend Dean, I've been delving into the sounds of Drugdealer lately. The creation of musical autodidact (and unrepentant stoner) Michael Collins, the music is a contemporary take on '70s pop-rock. The first time I listened to their 2016 album The End of Comedy, I kept thinking I was listening to a lost album of a super-group made up of Crosby, Stills and Nash and the Eagles (perhaps produced by Geoff Rafferty). Imagine the soundtrack of Guardians of the Galaxy as all original music and you have the basic idea. It's a great soundtrack to a groovy afternoon.
What I'm Watching - Time-Traveling Texan or Schizophrenic Slacker
I realized recently that I have a particular type of TV show that I really enjoy. They usually include a handful (if not all) of the following: unreliable narrators, bright colors and set design, skewed timelines, quirky cinematography, and deep philosophical conversations interrupted by fart jokes. Keeping with tradition, this weekend I binge-watched Amazon Prime's new show Undone. Aimless Alma (Rosa Salazar) feels stuck in her routine life until a car accident suddenly provides her with a connection to her deceased father who convinces her that her latent time-travel abilities are necessary to prevent his death 20 years earlier. Is Alma becoming schizophrenic like her grandmother, or is she tapping into a new reality? The use of rotoscoping (a combination of animation and live-action footage) allows the story to wind seamlessly between Alma's everyday existence and the more fantastical moments of her father's visits. Much like the glorious wibbily-wobbly-timey-wimey Russian Doll of earlier this year, the "is she/isn't she" of the plot is less important than the story of a young woman trying to find a connection to the world around her.
What I'm Thinking About - Environmental Heroism
"For me, it has been a long road and I often felt like a lone voice in the wilderness. But my journey isn't all that remarkable. What it requires is a willingness to stare this monster straight in the eye and then rise up to protect what we love about this wondrous place." - Peter Kalmus
All the best, and remember, tomorrow is Friday :)
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