Thursday, August 10, 2006

T-Shirt #14

NS in Sioux Falls -

(skeptics welcome)

I have always been a bit skeptical of global warming, not necessarily because of the science, but because of the proposed solutions put forth by some of its proponents (e.g. population control). A while back a link to a transcript of an interview with Richard Cizik was posted on MinusCar which I found very interesting. I went looking for it again a few days ago and found it as well as another interview in which he clearly expresses my reservations and my approach to this topic.

Reading MinusCar (and others’ essays) has gotten me thinking about what more can I do. For me, the minus being the new plus is about small daily choices and changes in my thinking focusing on conservation and quality of life. Things like better planning of vehicle excursions for efficiency with respect to time and fuel. In about 3 months, my employer is moving within easy walking/biking distance from my house. My plan is to get to work under my own power a majority of the time.

This morning I thought, “Why wait?” So I biked to work for the first time this morning. It was great! It was nice and cool and took me less time than I thought it would.

Yesterday morning, my 15 month old woke at about 6:30 am. Normally, I would be kind of bummed about missing out on a little extra sleep. Instead, I opted to hook up the bike trailer and head to a local convenience store to take advantage of a newly discovered deal on a necessary commodity in our house with 3 young boys, milk, in the standard quantity, 4 gallons. The resulting quality time with one of my boys, a bit of exercise and need for one less car trip energized me for the day.

As part of a recent move to a different house, I am reevaluating my lawn and lawn care tools. I am seriously looking at getting a push reel mower and a cordless rechargeable string trimmer. I have noticed one neighbor with grass that is very different form the super-green grass that has become some sort of addiction for many. It is a bit brown, not because it is so dry, but because that is just how it is. This homeowner has also intentionally not mowed a large portion of their lawn. It looks so natural, like the prairie upon which we live. Now, I have not purchased the aforementioned lawn care tools or replanted my lawn to native grass, but prior to reading MinusCar I don’t think these things would have ever crossed my mind.

So minuscartowork, minussleep and minusBriggs&Stratton have definite pluses of increased family time, better health due to more exercise and general conservation.

In my opinion, the greatest minus being a plus is something that isn’t all that new. It is from the Bible, Matthew 16:25-26, “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?”

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