Human beings are a disease, a cancer of this planet. You’re a plague and we are the cure. Mr. Smith, Boss android says to Neo in movie The Matrix.
I love this planet we live on. Mother earth, Gaia, Great Mother, 3rd rock from the Sun, whatever people want to call this magnificent place we inhabit. I also thoroughly enjoy the privilege of being at the top of the food chain.
Frankly I’m starting to or maybe getting more ticked off at the growing amount of people forming into groups that claim that collectively we humans should be ashamed of ourselves for merely existing and that we are spreading all over the earth like an infection.
I do not apologize for being human and being alive. I will not apologize for using electricity for food storage so I don’t die from rotten food. I will not apologize for using my fossil fueled car to drive where ever the hell I feel like going. When I trim the rose-bush in my back yard I am not hurting mother nature.
I’ve been reading a lot of dystopian, end times, and “shit hits the fan” books lately. Most of the books fit into 2 general categories. Category 1) We saw this EMP Blast (electromagnetic pulse) , economic meltdown, atomic bomb, super virus, zombie apocalypse, etc. coming; we prepared, and now have to defend ourselves, our homes and our supplies from the masses of people who don’t even bother to keep a week’s worth of food and water in their home and expect the government to step in and save them from their own stupidity. Kind of makes one wonder if Aesop’s fables are taught in school anymore. You know, the 3 little pigs with their house made out of straw or the ant who prepared for winter.
Category 2) the “evil and greedy corporations” have sucked all the natural resources out of the earth and we’re all living in a dark age of squalor, violence and filth. A select few are living in a bunker somewhere while we the teeming masses living on the streets suffer and die.
I tend to be in camp #1 and confess to a mild form of prepper mentality. I try to have a least a months’ worth of food, water, fuel for cooking, batteries, light sources, and basic medical supplies like aspirin, rubbing alcohol and band aids on hand at all times. Part of this is a direct result of living in Guam for 8 years. That place is natural disaster central. Earth quakes, typhoons, power plant meltdowns, a never ending party. I just never knew when the world was going to come crashing down around my ears. The up side of this is that I don’t have to get out in the freezing cold in a panic to go shopping because a snow storm is due to hit this afternoon.
Here in Texas, we had an ice storm in February and I was rather shocked by a conversation I had with a next door neighbor. This woman recently retired from a position at a large state-run hospital. Her job was disaster planning. She told me that she had to call her son to come get her and take her to his house because she did not have enough food for herself and her dogs to last TWO DAYS, or even gas in her car to get to his house. Excuse me? It seems like you can almost accidentally have at least 2 days of food in the house. Sure maybe not filet mignon and asparagus, but nutrition to maintain life? Furthermore an ice storm is not something that happens suddenly. It didn’t just drop out of the sky and land on her head like a tornado. She knew for at least a week that it was coming. Maybe she just didn’t want to be alone. But, give me a break. My tax dollars paid this woman’s salary 30 years while she planned for disasters. It galled me.
One thing I’ve noticed about category 2 writers is that most of them are young people in their 20s or early 30s. For this group their entire life they have been listening to vehement proponents of the global warming theory, corporations are evil and greedy, we’re going to run out of fossil fuels, we should reduce our carbon footprint and similar rhetoric. It is absolute “reality” for many people of this generation.
When I was a child we had geology books too. This is not a new phenomenon. The difference was that the general scientific view at that time was that the climate indeed would change, but that we were heading towards another ice age. Now we’re supposedly headed towards a global meltdown fueled by smog, evil corporations and cow farts. Ah, how far we’ve come in a mere 50 years.
North Texas had an unusually mild spring this year so far. Mother Nature noticed the oversight and decided to make up for lost time last night.
6 of us went out to a fawncy restaurant to celebrate my Mother-in-law’s 80th birthday. During the meal I could see a reflection of trees whipping around in a mirror across the room. The trees were not just blowing in one direction; they were whipping around like they were in a washing machine. That is never a good sign.
I started to get antsy but kept telling myself that it was just because I was with the in-laws. I even ordered a second gin & tonic which is unusual for me when dining with them. A little after 8:00 pm we stood outside saying our goodbyes. The wind came up and we were all standing there with our hair peaking up on top of our head like we were in a wind tunnel.
For the ride home we watched an impressive light show to the south, all kinds of spectacular but unusual strikes. Some that branched out horizontally across the sky. Others hit the ground and the rays were so wide it looked fake. Someone was photo shopping Mother Nature.
At home I was in a semi undressed state and Mr. Husband was without apparel when he came running out of the bedroom yelling “the sirens are going off.” I was in a sort of stupor and asked “what sirens?” He answered “the tornado sirens,” for once not rolling his eyes and giving me that “Well duh” look he excels in. I don’t know how he always hears them and I don’t. Must have been that 20 years of working in bars with music loud enough to rattle the fillings out of your teeth.
Of course a sort controlled pandemonium ensued. Where are the pets? Are they inside? Mr. Husband put some clothes on. He tends to respond to panic by dressing. I don’t blame him. If a tornado hits I don’t want to end up getting fished out of the rubble in my birthday suit. I grabbed my 2 most valuable possessions – my purse and laptop and put them in a handy place in case I had to grab them and take shelter.
Fortunately for us, but not so fortunate for those in the path of the tornado, it touched down south of Dallas in the Granbury area. Storm spotters said the tornado became huge with a mile wide funnel on the ground at one point, a real wrath of God type scenario. Some people reported hail the size of grapefruits. A chunk of ice that big could come crashing right through your roof and land on your coffee table.
This morning the news is reporting 12 dead and hundreds injured. The response of people rushing to help those who have lost everything but the clothes on their back is heartwarming.
This kind of disaster always reminds me that life is short. Grab it where you can and don’t waste time sitting around bemoaning your lot in life because it could get a hell of a lot worse in the blink of an eye.
My previous rant about the evil Micro$oft’s policy of not allowing used games to play on their new Xbox 360 got me pondering a rather disturbing question. Should I patent myself – before someone else does? I have patented my writing in a way by registering my web address and publishing my writings. Again though, I don’t technically own my web address. I am registered as the current owner according to icann.org.
OK, how on earth did I make THAT mental leap? Lemme ‘splain please. For years now certain corporations and individuals are making mega bucks running around getting patents on everything from web site names, to grains of rice, to amino acids and genes found in the human body. Yes sir, right this very minute you may be sitting there peacefully unaware that some research company holds a patent to components of your physical body.
For those of us who have been web masters or web mistresses, in my case, we are familiar with website campers who perch like buzzards, waiting to jump in and grab ownership of a domain name if the current owner forgets to renew their annual subscription in time. There are many who make a living doing this. All they do is lurk around all day waiting for someone to flub up.
Typically the buzzards target popular web sites that are big money makers. They hold the website “hostage” until the rightful owner coughs up a large chunk of change to get their website back. Usually itty bitty not-for-profit personal blog sites are safe, but it’s a good idea to make sure you keep your website registration up to date. Better that then wake up one fine morning to find that your site got snatched out from under you while you slept. If this happens, you will definitely know it. Your former site will now be a huge list of things for sale, including of course, your domain name. Everything from butter churns to used Russian missile silos.
Patenting grains of rice, wheat, etc. really gets me going. When a large farming corporation does this they can storm in and target nearby small family farmers for “patent violations.” What really happened is that Mother Nature sent a honeybee across the invisible property lines to pollinate plants in adjacent fields. The small farmer was just minding his own business growing his crops, not skulking around in the night stealing patented grains. People have lost their farms to food corporations with big pockets and powerful lawyers because of this practice.
Patenting parts of the human body is particularly scary. The biggest example so far of the debate and outrage about this practice came from patenting the human genes BRCA1 and BRCA2. These are genetic markers that indicate a woman’s likelihood of developing breast or ovarian cancer. The company that owned the patents was charging exorbitant fees for testing women for these genes. Nice little money-making scheme there.
Interesting reads on this subject are: Human Gene Patenting: Yes, Companies Can Own Your DNA and Laws of nature are unpatentable
It’s all confusing to me though. It seems to me that since I was born into this body, I own it, and all the accompanying genes there in. Oh well, on a metaphysical level, I only lease this body for a possible 80 to 100 years or so, until I’m finished with it. Then it reverts back to its original owner.
Tuesday April 3rd, 2011 was an interesting day, if you define interesting as “oh God, oh God, I’m gonna die.” Extremely glad I lived through it, along with 6,371,773 of my closest friends. That’s the population of the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex as of the 2010 census. Most of the time I love living in North Texas. It’s just those pesky 2 or 3 days a year that get so wild and crazy you need a change of pants.
The weatherman said “chance of storms, some severe.” Yea yea, how many times have we heard that? It might hail, rain, or it might rains frogs. The sun may shine so hard it melts the patio furniture. Go away you bother me, Mr. Weatherman. Well, we all got our comeuppance yesterday. Mr. Weatherman got it right.
Warning sirens started blaring and they sound scary as hell. Lemme tell ya! No sound effects in any of the scary movies made lately came up with anything scarier. Then, all of the sudden the damn tornados started dropping out of the sky. Excuse me, I’m really not in the mood for this! Could you go elsewhere, storm? I would really appreciate it. Didn’t sleep well last night and was in the mood to vegetate, NOT contemplate where in the house to hide to increase my chances of surviving the remains of this day.
Dallas/Fort Worth got hammered. Hundreds of people are homeless. But, thank God, no one was killed. That is the true miracle here. Brother and sister-in-law are looking at replacing their roof for the 4th time in 15 years. Her shiny red beamer was totally destroyed by hail the size of baseballs.
I found myself cast into instant solidarity with six million neighbors. A potential disaster is the great equalizer. Everyone single person in the area is thinking the exact same thing. “Oh crap, it might just rain a little, or a twister might decide to squat on my head and I lose everyone I love and everything I own in 5 minutes. All that decides it is the luck of the draw.” Sheesh!
Mr. Husband and I were extremely fortunate. At our house the only thing that happened was a few rose petals fell of my rose-bush. We suffered mutual semi-nervous breakdowns. I hunkered in the bathroom with my most prized possessions, my wedding ring, laptop, and purse. Hub-man brought his pistol and our tax returns.
The morning after was one of the most beautiful mornings I’ve ever seen. Mother Nature painted the day with a delicate silk brush. Gentle breezes, birds singing, butterflies flitting. Hadn’t realized how scared I was until I looked around and realized how crystal clear and wonderful everything looked, and sounded. Nothing like having the patooty scared out of me to realize how much I love life.