Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Spare The Cod, Spoil The Child?

Green is in. Now, I know this, being a lover of the color green and therefore quick to pick up mention of it in magazines, advertisements, and general public service announcements. That being said, if you haven't noticed, everybody in the whole entire world is "going green." In fact, green is the new black, to paraphrase fashionistas burrough-wide. Today, I am clothed in a cosy green cable-knit sweater, a wise choice, given my (intimidatingly stunning) green eyes. Maybe it's because of my childhood love and implicit trust in Kermit, but green is our friend.
At least if you're a pseudo-intellectual celebrity. I am only allowed to bandy about "pseudo-intellectual" because a colleague at college (say that five times fast) once referred to me as his "favorite female pseudo-intellectual." That one backhanded compliment spurred more academic achievement than was probably proportionate.
So not only do celebrities chain themselves to trees (though I do intensely dislike urban sprawl), but now a quick glance at your local circular's headlines will reveal that Wal-Mart, Ford, and McDonald's are all "going green."
Caveat: I fully support any company that will reduce its waste, become more efficient, and will easily aid consumers in make wise purchases by providing products that will save us from living atop landfills within the next decade.
It began to grate on sissy's nerves, however, when NBC injected environmental themes into their hit fall Thursday night lineup. Nobody, but nobody, messes with my Office. Yet here they marched, one right after another. 30 Rock, My Name is Earl, The Office all had "green" themes. Al Gore even showed up. Would that they would have a Darfur night, or a Human Rights in China night.
Carrying on about using efficient lightbulbs and reducing emissions is a worthwhile cause, though my lightbulb is getting burned out on strident, skeletal celebrities harping about it. But it strikes me that complaint about the environment is a luxury of the wealthy. I remember feeling shocked at the thick, soupy layer of smog that quilted Ulaan Bataar, capital city of Mongolia. I had forgotten that clear skies are still a luxury in many parts of the globe. Many working families with whom I am acquainted don't mind recycling but simultaneously worry about paying for new shoes for their kids, whether they're going to get laid off, and how to afford prescriptions during flu and cold season. Survival for the Gores may mean preserving the planet. For many, survival is still as immediate as the next mortgage payment or tank of gas.
Let's put a little more green in the pockets of working families this holiday season, bask in the glow of green holly, ivy and mistletoe, and let a few other matters rest quietly in peace for a while. The Greenpeace-ation of the world can be put on hold. Serve green beans at a homeless shelter or stock them in a food pantry instead.


Carrie said...

What a catchy little post title. Add to that the title of psudo-intellectual and I'm definitely smiling.

I will have to be honest. I probably would be more moved to think "green" if there weren't so much hype about it. There's something in me that balks against fads.

If Al Gore would just keep quiet for a little while, in no time, I'd be out in the lakes saving fish from the clutches of Wal-Mart bags.

Anonymous said...

or if Al would ride his bike, fly commercial and get a mobile home. Maybe then.

Carrie said...

Better yet, live in a sod house plastered with manure. THAT'S green, folks!