Has it really been two weeks? I’m a slacker.
So I was at this conference in Baltimore, Md., for most of the previous week, where there was a lot of talk about business and the [tag]environment[/tag], and how [tag]business[/tag] is already changing, having acknowledged what most of our current political leaders here in the United States like to pretend doesn’t exist: the reality of [tag]climate change[/tag]. And yet I couldn’t help but notice that I didn’t see anyone else that was attending the conference riding the light-rail [tag]train[/tag] between downtown and the airport. There were some 2,000 attendees; I arrived the afternoon before the conference started, and left on Friday late morning the last day of the conference. Seems to me I should have at least seen a few others taking the train, if I wasn’t the only one. And it’s not like the [tag]light-rail[/tag] in Baltimore is easy to miss; you see signs for it all over the airport, and there is a stop literally right in front of the convention center where this conference was held. There’s a train running every 10 or 15 minutes or so.
[tag]Hypocrisy[/tag] is an ugly thing. If you’re gonna talk the talk, you gotta walk the walk.
And you know, I realized this week that I hate the term “climate change.” To me, this is like saying someone “passed away.” No they didn’t. They died. They’re dead; they’re not coming back, and all that this so terribly implies. That’s the simple truth of the matter. Saying “passed away” glosses over the unpleasant nature of it, giving it a socially-acceptable patina. Ever since my mother’s death, I wince whenever I hear someone say someone else “passed,” or “passed away.” Perhaps it makes it easier for some to deal with, but for me, it’s belittling the dead and the meaning that their death has for those that loved them.
In much the same way, the term climate change puts a similarly neutral patina on [tag]global warming[/tag]. Makes it less worrisome and scary. I can see the argument that some might make, that climate change is perhaps a more accurate term, in that it covers a variety of phenomena related to the fact that the earth is getting warmer, not just rising temperatures. But I have to reject it; the term climate change makes this too innocuous. If I travel from the 45th parallel to the equator, it gets warmer — that’s climate change. It snows in winter where I live, and now at the end of spring, it’s sunny and warm — that’s climate change. The fact that our modern lifestyle is producing measurable damage to our atmosphere, and consequently our environment, that’s global warming. That’s not innocuous; it’s bad.
My mother didn’t pass away. She died, it nearly drove me insane with grief, and I still miss her. Climate change doesn’t make me want to ride my bike and take the train. Global warming does because it scares me, almost as much as hypocrisy.
On the plus side, I finally got to visit [tag]Edgar Allan Poe[/tag]’s grave. I’ve been to Baltimore three or four times now for various conferences/tradeshows at the convention center, which is just a few blocks from this Revolutionary-War era church/graveyard. Each time I had every intention of going, but somehow never managed it. This time I was determined to follow through. But dumb-ass me didn’t even bring any [tag]brandy[/tag]. D’oh! I had every intention of grabbing one of those little bottles of hooch from my hotel-room ‘fridge (it didn’t have brandy, but I figured whiskey would do, and it’s not like Edgar is in a position to argue), but alas, I forgot. Guess I’ll have to remedy that the next time I pass through Baltimore.