I laugh at myself, which sounds weird, but it’s a healthy way to hang on to sanity in an insane world. I so want to be a force for good in the world, but I’m a dismal failure as superhero even in my tiny bit of the world
For instance, I loathe the concrete and poisonous asphalt that seals off the earth from the atmosphere, and creates killing fields for countless creatures (which, incidentally, include humans). I hate asphalt so much that when I bought my little house, I tore up half the length of the driveway. I added compost to rehabilitate the starved soil, which now supports living things, like a transplanted conifer spout that’s nearly three feet high and wide, and of which I am ridiculously proud.
Then this summer, my next-door neighbor hired a contractor. With banging, clanging and roaring machinery, billowing bituminous stink, – I saw that people will kill for a parking space. What killed me is that nobody has to.
There are eco-friendly choices like sand, grass and gravel [more at eHow | Our Everyday Earth]. In light of burgeoning problems of storm-water runoff and urban heat sinks, isn’t it a no-brainer that public planners and community leaders would do the wise thing and promote the public good? Yeah, funny.
Anyway, mud was the original topic, occasioned by several days of near-40F temperatures melting down the snow and saturating exposed patches of ground. While mud is a harbinger of spring, it’s a dreary lead-in for nature’s return to life. Mud is slippery, it splashes clothing (with unattractive color) and gunks up the tread on footwear.
But the mud got me to thinking about small ways individuals can have a positive impact. I ‘liberated’ a bit of earth from asphalt… only to have an equal area smothered next door. What if I had been a better neighbor? I might have shared ideas, suggested solutions that might have resulted in a net gain for the neighborhood.