Over the last few weeks, I’ve been involved in a variety of ways at the kids’ school. The most time-consuming activities related to co-chairing a green program. We had two assemblies for the kids on Wednesday, with teachers and the principal playing various parts in a play about global warming, carbon emissions, and the like. Clearly, that’s heavy stuff for anyone younger than a 10 or 11 year old to really get their heads around. But it worked out. The play was fabulous. The kids got into it. And I managed to get the local newspaper to cover it.
All great, yeah? Except…
1. Reading about my involvement, the woman across the street said to me, pointing at the vehicles in my driveway, “So will we be seeing a ‘For Sale’ sign on that anytime soon?”
2. Pointing out that I rarely drive the behemoth unless the kids have friends with them, she said she had, in fact, noticed that. But she also noticed the pile of wood.
3. Yeah, I burn woods in a fireplace.
4. And, yeah, I have three children, meaning I’m further contributing to the eventual destruction of the planet.
5. I have a dog, too, whose poop I pick up with plastic bags, which I then deposit in the trash can.
6. I don’t compost.
7. I use plastic bags for some of the kids’ food.
8. I sometimes – but not so often as in the past – drink Diet Coke from plastic bottles. And I nearly always have a Super Big Gulp of it each day. (Although, it my defense, your honor, I re-use the cups a dozen times and then recycle them when they’re replaced.)
9. I buy crap for the kids that clearly was made in China or in sweatshops or by unicorns which had been imprisoned to do the work.
10. I have a pool, which, while heated by solar panels, still requires an electric pump and filtering system.
We have taken some measures to right our very own environmental bubble. But there is surely so much more I could do. I’ve known that. Forever. But I’ve never felt quite as guilty about it as when I stood up in front of 500 grade schoolers and lectured them on how to be good environmental citizens. I suck.