It’s too bad Pope Leo X didn’t have Pay Pal, e-commerce engines or even a primitive version of the Ubernet. Just think what he could have done to forestall the Reformation, or the birth of Confessional Lutherans.
I can just imagine Leo’s Holy See Spam: 30 percent off name brand indulgences, “click here”; or Get Viagra and “Pay As You Grow Indulgences.”
Welcome to my sarcastic take on what I think is one of the most inane Web 2.0 business plans I’ve ever heard of. Web-based carbon credits.
Holy Cow, Guenther, Martin Luther couldn’t even make this up. But some idiot on Sand Hill Road with a twisted view of eco-politics is backing such a plan.
I Better hang on to my Husquvarna chainsaw with its carbide-tipped 26-inch chain and bar, my life is freaking complete.
Now, I can offset my ATV-driving, and red-wine making commutes to the California Gold Country by donating money to some web-based entity lacking recognized audit practices who will invest money in projects that generate clean air, green or blue vistas, and make me feel better by adding their URL to my list of Internet often Interbet visited sites, right underneath CalTrout, Ducks Unlimited, the Sierra Club, the NRA and the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation.
And now I can buy ecological
absolution, indulgences from any of my several computers. Could my tie-dyed life have more meaning?
I have a couple of small sinful confessions I’ll put out there right now. I’ve littered when I was younger, and I once released a mid-sized trout that I thought might die as a result of my efforts to land it by the craggy side of a cold northern California creek. Oh, I use to drive a terribly inefficient Volkswagen bus with a built-to scream 1835cc upright air-cooled motor that had not one, but two big ass fuel gulping carburetors. I really liked that VW Type II, even if it got really bad mileage, blasting up hill on I-5 at 85 mph in fourth gear.
But wait there’s more, your Web 2.0 ecological eminence. When I bought boat 2.0 it had a (father forgive me) a 70 horsepower two-stroke outboard that would discharge a sad blue petroleum film through the exhaust port in its propeller hub.
But after that unreliable SOB almost killed me by stopping dead in the water in front of a fast returning guided missile frigate just inside San Diego harbor last year, I saw the light. The White light. The guiding light. The beam of righteousness. The light was right there at a Suzuki outboard dealer, shining on a brand new 50 horsepower long shaft Suzuki four-stroke. I was blinded by it’s smooth acceleration and fell in love with it’s mighty torque curve, its ability to sneak up on innocent yellowtail very quietly, and most of all, the fact that it doesn’t leave a film of petroleum ring around the harbor.
Back to reality and lame-ass Web 2.0 fads designed to feed current consumer guilt.
Want to reduce your carbon footprints or offset your disastrous effect on my beloved outdoors. Here’ are some practical ideas.
1. Plant sequoia strswberries as ground cover. The fruit tastes great, the plants have large leaves and quickly convert CO2 to oxygen. Plus, you can use inexpensive cow poop to boost the plant’s fruit production and its vegetative growth.
2. Be pious and buy a Prius. Hey Al Gore III proved you can get them over 100 miles an hour and the wide open lanes on the 280 beckon fetchingly. I routinely get about 45.6 mpg in mine and make it from ecologically wanton Azusa, CA to Mountain View or Sacramento on one tank of gas, arriving with about one gallon left in my tank.
3. This fall, take your kids or your neighbors yuppy larva to a Sierra or coastal meadow and collect acorns. Put them pointy end down in small pots filled with compost and set them in the sun. Water sparingly and begin to feed lightly when the baby oaks begin to grow. Let grow for a year or two, then go plant them in the meadows from which they came. Rather than send money to some Israeli tree farm, I’ve planted an oak sapling for each and every member of my father’s and mother’s family that has passed away. There’s a little arroyo on the East Fork of the San Gabriel River that has some great looking oaks today. And most were planted by me in remembrance of old men that taught me to walk softly in the forest, or how to tickle up trout with my bare hands, or that a chocolate chip ice cream cone on a hot summer day was indeed a very good thing.
But this carbon credit web site idea is a hoot. If you really give tinkers damn, plant one or two fruit trees in your front or back yards. I’d recommend stone fruits over citrus (which are technically shrubs, not trees), or maybe even a nice oak, under which you can read Steinbeck, Pearl S. Buck, or Twain, as you eat a mouth-watering peach that you grew, without much help from the Internet.
So walk gently, don’t be afraid to get your feet wet crossing a cold moving trout-filled stream on a hot summer day. Plant some fruit trees, share some nuts with an urban squirrel and enjoy the outdoors.
But web sites dedicated to buying ecological indulgences. Give me a break! Stop the Reformation, I can’t believe it’s come to this…
Beside, I just got my chainsaw sharpened and I have a date with a citrus stump out by my wood pile over at the side of my compost heap.—Jim Forbes, un reporterro viejo,08/29/2007 from atop my mountaintop adjacent to the Cleveland National Forest in San Diego County.