You (Donâ€™t) Need a Thneed
Or…The Lorax Continues to Blog for the Trees.
I (sort of) apologize for my blog mood-swings of late (as in the past five years.) It makes me feel better learning that I’m not the only one who has come to feel out of relationship with the medium and its former audience, and not certain how to go on.
Like me, others have said that as long as they are talking knitting or kitties, the readership stays on board. But as soon as they move to life-relevant, urgent, very personal, gut-level and more weighty matters–far more important than dropping a stitch or Fluffy battling shadows on the floor inside a grocery bag–the readers flee for the hills.
Don’t go off-brand, buckeroos (and buckerettes.) And yet, we have the capacity to amuse ourselves to death while the house is on fire. Do we want to sustain the medium if that is all it has become–a Facebook Annex?
I’m sitting here a couple of hours before first light, wondering if, and then what to post this morning. Fridays I generally don’t bother offering Friday posts as blogs drop off the radar after Thursdays around here.
But I am shaken by the visual weight of these two images in the same frame of thought this morning, and by what they represent–at least to my mind. And so I offer you visuals from two possible futures.
Please examine Exhibit A (image-left)–the incredible macro-movie from Wednesday. If you didn’t see it, at least copy the link for the weekend.Â No. Watch it now. We’ll wait.
This video snippet is a remarkably-captured celebration of just a sampling ofÂ the astounding realities of behavior, form, color, texture and beauty in the natural world. This world we did not make but can destroy exists just outside your window, we just don’t get to see it’s detail like this, but your nearby world is just as real, just as amazing as the one depicted in the video. If we only had eyes to see (or know without seeing) nature in this way. Takes a wacky biologist I suppose.
The 7 minute video lifts up the wonders of nature and life, and watching it elevates our spirits, gives us hope and joy. Included in similar exhibits for your imagination’s consideration, if you’ll hold your arms wide and squint just a little, would be videos of every human family gathering around the birth of their newest healthy grand child; videos of those children climbing and running and laughing in bright colors on playgrounds and in shady parks and meadows around the world, cavorting under the sun; videos of those same children growing up into young farmers happily harvesting food in rainforests, on rocky coasts and high plains across the planet; growing old together in place.
Exhibit A, we’ll say, represents all the forms that life on Earth has the potential to continue to generate from healthy soils, clean water and working ecologic webs of give and take. But the health of that future stands in terrible and (geologically speaking) immediateÂ jeopardy, and if you don’t believe this, you (like the young students I got to know recently) have not been paying attention.
Now Exhibit B (image right, and link HERE): just one of thousands of earthly crime scenes: the tar sands of Canada. All the Exhibit B’s (including but not limited to mountaintop removal, desertification, coral reef deaths, raped rain forests, massive fish kills and ocean dead zones, megadrought and melting permafrost) reveal the horror of the truth: that humankind is willing to give our proxy to the Once-lers of Mordor–to obliterate continents-worth of those forms of life we watched in Exhibit A.
They do so in our names–we, the Consumers–for the purpose of squeezing out of the ground one more million miles of jet travel,Â one more million dollars of corporate profit. One million more Thneeds, the Lorax would say.
Mordor knows what it’s doing and gleefully pushes all the harder on the throttle. And you and I and those scurrying insects and hungry frog and all the Truffula trees close relatives are the victims.
So again, I apologize, and I don’t. This is a blogger’s schizophrenic reality. We love to crochet. But we want to know our great-grandkids get the chance to do it. And we sort of have a hard time smelling the house on fire and blogging nothing but blue skies.
“What’s that thing you’ve made out of my Truffula Tree?”
Serving suggestion: since the kids spend most of their time plugged in, sit them in front of the original Lorax from 1972.Â Might be worth your time as well, grown-up types.