Monday, October 15, 2007
It was toward the end of pick-up time at the kids’ school. The older kids had been out for about 20 minutes. The afternoon kindergartners – youngest son included – had been let out of class for five, six minutes. Youngest was running around with a couple of mates. The last remaining afternoon kindergartener was looking forlorn, sitting alone on the bench while the teachers wondered what to do with him next.
Into the traffic circle pulled his dad in a belching, full-size pick-up truck. It was a man’s truck, jacked up to be higher off the ground. The father jumped out, and went to grab the kid. He left the truck chugging away.
Also witnessing the scene was a woman whose face contorted in horror. Truly, she looked like she had seen something horrid. We made eye contact, and she stated how she could not believe this man. Why the need for such a huge vehicle? Look in the parking lot and you’ll see the disregard for the environment so many of the parents had. Had I heard the NPR story about this? Did I know that America would soon fall to pieces because of this? Had I seen the Hummer? A Hummer!
I nodded agreement with her on everything. I murmured sweet acquiescence. I was empathetic. I, like her, was shocked. Shocked, I say, shocked! We were kindred spirits.
She went off with her son, walking who knows how many miles to get home so she could do her small part. She left with the knowledge that there was at least one other parent at the school who saw things her way.
I waited five minutes before I rounded up the youngest and headed to our behemoth of a vehicle. I didn’t want to chance that she’d see me and know the inconvenient truth about me.
[We’re starting a Curb Your Carbon program at the kids’ school today. This week, we’re giving away compact fluorescent light bulbs. Did you know that by replacing just two incandescent light bulbs with the CFLs, you will stop more than 350 pounds of carbon from being produced? At out house, we’ve already replaced more than half of the bulbs in our house. We just need to find some purty ones for the bathroom fixtures. Stay tuned for more environmental minutes!]
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