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Unapologetically, Chris

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Monday, May 28th, 2007
9:54 pm - Earth Day Cometh and Earth Day Goeth And Where have all the Bees Gone?
Earth Day Cometh and Earth Day Goeth And Where have all the Bees Gone?
by Captain Paul Watson

Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. - Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955)

Earth Day is almost here. I don’t believe in Earth Day myself. I think it’s a little silly to devote one single day of the year to being concerned about the environment, but I suppose one day is better than no day at all.

Having been an environmental activist since 1968, I have seen the movement go up and down like a roller coaster in popularity. It was big in 1972 with the Environmental Conference in Stockholm which I attended and it became big again in 1992 with the U.N. Environmental Conference in Rio De Janeiro that I also attended. I remember that the priority issue in 1972 was the danger of escalating human populations but by 1992, that concern was not even on the agenda.

Well we are approaching the end of another 20 year period and it looks like ecology is in vogue again thanks to global warming and a few other scary things. Green is once again popular.

I can always tell when the environment is getting to be faddish again. My indicator is the number of lectures I am booked for around this time of year. It reached its peak in 1992, practically disappeared for awhile and now it’s coming around again.

What worries me is that the movement is constantly being sidetracked by the issue of the day.

It’s global warming now. When we were trying to warn people about global warming and climate change twenty years ago, no one was interested. Now it’s become the “in” issue and the big organizations are tapping the public for donations to address the problem although no one has come up with anything that makes much sense. But global warming is good for business if you’re one of the big bureaucratic organizations whose primary concern is really corporate self preservation.

Greenpeace is even telling people that they can slow down global warming by (and I kid you not) “singing in the shower”. Yep, you see all you have to do is run the water, then get wet, shut the water off, and sing in the shower as you lather up and then open up the faucet and rinse off. Ah, so simple to save the world.

The problem is that these big organizations are to politically correct to address the ecologically correct solutions.

Instead they are baffling everyone with abstract concepts like carbon trading and carbon storage or trying to sell us a new hydrid Japanese car.

Even Al Gore with his Inconvenient Truth totally ignored the most inconvenient truth of all. I’ll get to that in a moment.

But let’s look at the number one cause of global greenhouse gas emissions.

First and foremost it is human over-population, the very same issue that was the priority concern at the 1972 United Nations Conference on the Environment in Stockholm.

It’s 6.5 billion people folks.

Remember in 1950, the world population was 3 billion. It’s now more than doubled.

6.5 billion people produce one hell of an annual output of waste and utilize an unbelievable amount of resources and energy.

And this number is rising minute by minute, day, by day, year by year.

And most of the people having children have no idea why they are even having children other than that’s what you do. Most of them don’t really love their children because if they did they would be very much involved in trying to ensure that their children have a world to survive in.

Unless over-population is addressed, there is absolutely no way of slowing down global greenhouse gas emissions.

But how do you do that within the context of economic systems that require larger and larger numbers to perform the essential task of consuming products?

Corporations need workers and buyers. Governments need tax-payers, bureaucrats and soldiers. More people means more money.

I’ve said for decades that the solution to all of our problems is simple. We just need to live in accordance with the three basic laws of ecology.

First is the Law of Diversity. The strength of an eco-system lies in diversity of species within it. Weaken diversity and the entire system will be weakened and will ultimately collapse.

Second is the Law of Interdependence. All of the species within an eco-system are interdependent. We need each other.

And the third law of Ecology is the Law of Finite Resources. There is a limit to growth because there is a limit to carrying capacity.

Human populations are exceeding ecological carrying capacity.

Exceeding ecological carrying capacity is diminishing both resources and diversity of species.

The diminishment of diversity is causing serious problems with interdependence.

Albert Einstein once wrote that "if the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe, then man would have only four years of life left. No more bees, no more pollination, no more plants, no more animals, no more man."

That is the Law of Interdependence.

Forget global warming folks. The disappearance of the honeybee could end our existence as human beings on this planet far sooner than we think.

And the honey bee is in fact now disappearing. Why? We don’t know why. It could be genetically modified crops, I could be pesticides or it could be that our cell phones are interfering with their ability to navigate.

Whatever the cause the fact is that they are disappearing. All around the world bees are disappearing in a crisis called Colony Collapse Disorder.

And bees pollinate our plants. Everywhere on the planet, bees are hard at work making it possible for you to live and enjoy life.

We hold on to our place on this planet by only a toehold. If anything happens to the grass family, we are screwed. If the earthworms disappear, we are in big trouble. If the bees disappear, well according to Albert Einstein who was considered somewhat smarter than most of us, we will have only four years. Just enough time to get a college degree to discover that everything you learned is relatively useless when sitting on the doorstep of global ecological annihilation.

We are cutting down the forest and plundering the oceans of life. We are polluting the soil, the air and the water and we are rapidly running out of fresh water to drink.

Only corporations like Coke and Pepsi have figured out that water is more valuable than gold. That is why they are bottling it in plastic bottles and selling it. This week I saw a bottle of water in my hotel room that I could have drunk for only $4.

Unbelievable. That means that water is now being sold for more than the equivalent amount of gasoline. I hope that I’m not the only one who thinks this is insanity.

Now for Al Gore’s really inconvenient truth. In his film he does not mention once that the meat and dairy industry that produces the bacon, the steaks, the chicken wings and the milk is a larger contributor to greenhouse gas emissions than the automobile industry. You see, Al may drive a Prius but he likes his burgers.

This is why the big organizations like Greenpeace and the Sierra Club will not say a thing about the meat industry. Last year I saw Greenpeacers sitting down for a baked fish meal onboard the Greenpeace ship Esperanza while engaged in a campaign to oppose over-fishing.

When we pointed out that our Sea Shepherd ships serve only vegan meals, the Greenpeace cook replied, “that’s just silly.”

We see what we want to see and we rationalize everything else.

The oceans have been plundered to the point that 90% of the fish have been removed from their eco-systems and at this very moment there is over 65,000 miles of long lines set in the Pacific Ocean alone and there are tens of thousands of fishing vessels scouring the seas in a rapacious quest to scoop up everything that swims or crawls.

This is ecological insanity.

The largest marine predator on the planet right now is the cow. More than half the fish taken from the sea is rendered into fish meal and fed to domestic livestock. Puffins are starving in the North sea to feed sand eels to chickens in Denmark. Sheep and pigs have replaced the shark and the sea lion as the dominant predators in the ocean and domestic house cats are eating more fish than all the world’s seals combined. We are extracting some fifty to sixty fish from the sea to raise one farm raised salmon.

This is ecological insanity.

Yet the demand for shark fin is rising in China. Ignorant people still want to wear fur coats. In America, we order fries, a cheeseburger and a “diet” coke.

Ecological insanity folks.

Last week a reporter called to ask me if I had really said that earth worms are more important than people. I answered that yes I had. He then asked how I could justify such a statement.

“Simple,” I answered. “Earthworms can live on the planet without people. We cannot live on the planet without earthworms thus from an ecological point of view, earthworms are more important than people.”

He said that I was insane for suggesting such a ridiculous idea when people were made in the image of God, and earthworms were not.

What we have here of course is a failure to communicate between two radically different world views. His which is anthropocentric and sees reality as human centred and mine which is biocentric and sees reality as including all species equally working in interdependence. He sees us as divine and better than all the other species and I see us as a bunch of arrogant primates out of control.

But that’s my two cents worth for Earth Day 2007.

Consider the humble honey bee and remember that the little black and yellow insect you see flitting busily from flower to flower is all that stands between us and our demise as a species on this planet.

We better see to it that they don’t disappear.

May be freely published and distributed

"Sail forth - steer for the deep waters only,
Reckless O soul, exploring, I with thee and thou with me,
For we are bound where mariner has not yet dared to go,
And we will risk the ship, ourselves and all."
- Walt Whitman


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Monday, April 2nd, 2007
5:24 pm
Those perfect, perfect moments. That's why. That's why.

current mood: loved

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Saturday, December 30th, 2006
1:30 pm
This update is long overdue.

On September 15, three days before my due date, Terry brought me to the ER to get antibiotics for an awful toothache. I had a wicked cavity that developed from 9 months of Hershey bars. Being full term, there was no chance of me having it worked on with Tylenol as my only means of relief.
The nurse who took care of me was a Godsend. It pains me that I don’t know her name. She listened to our banter and our laughter. She was kind and gentle. She told us she’d had a home delivery, and waxed nostalgic on how anxious and panicky her significant other, who was also significantly older than her, was. She told us he was an Englishman…. “a classy Benny Hill.” He had passed away a few years earlier, when her daughter was just three.
Terry went outside for a smoke, and she came in to remove my IV. Having read my chart and knowing my age, she tentatively inquired about Terry’s. I told her. She stood close to me, her eyes full of love and sorrow, she said, “You know what you’ll have to face…” I nodded and told her that I had someone who loved me more than anything, who I knew would be a great father. She hugged me and told me she completely understood. Before we left, asked if we were having a boy or a girl. When I told her it’s a boy, she said if they’d had a son, she’d have named him Ashton Oliver, and offered it as a suggestion. We embraced again, and Terry and I left.

They decided to induce labor when the baby was a week late. At 7am on the 25th, having been three centimeters dilated for the last week, the induction began. At 9, Dr. Garza came in to check on things and predicted birth by 4pm. They administered the epidural once I started feeling the contractions. The hours passed, and by 2:30pm, I was fully dilated. Everything seemed to be right on schedule, the only complication being that I couldn’t feel anything at all from the waste down, and couldn’t push or move my legs. The drip was stopped for a while to restore feeling. Once sensation came back and I began feeling the contractions, we started pushing. We pushed for hours and the contractions climbed and climbed until I was literally screaming with pain. The drip was turned back on, but the contractions continued to climb. Why a woman would opt for natural childbirth is beyond me. I sobbed into Terry’s chest as the nurse ran to find the anesthesiologist. The epidural IV had kinked somewhere along the line. Once the problem was solved, Terry had to pull my knees to my chest for me. He tended to my every need as we labored for a few more hours.
By 2am, the baby still hadn’t come, and the doctor deemed me too swollen for a vaginal delivery. We prepared for a cesarean. In the OR, Terry sat by my side and held my hand. Every so often he’d stand up to take a peak at how things were coming along. My entire body trembled. The umbilical cord was wrapped, twice, around his neck. We heard his first cry. Terry stayed by my side, soothing me until the procedure was completely finished and then went to meet the baby. The nurses put him into Terry’s arms, and he brought him over to me.
2:37am, a Tuesday, September 26th, weighing 6 lbs 15 ounces, 19.5 inches long, Ashton Oliver Sider was born, showing me what is really is all about.

Terry is an amazing father. He adores Ashton’s disposition, his smile, and can’t bear to hear him cry. He’s infinitely grateful that he gets the chance to do it again, experience everything he missed out on. They will be best friends. He lights up when his daddy walks into the room. I look forward to hearing Ashton call out for him.
We’ve both become those people who talk incessantly about how amazing their baby is. We refuse to even consider that we may have a bias. Other babies pale in comparison…
He’s just over three months old today. It’s as if he’s been here my entire life. I didn’t know what love was before meeting him, and I can’t imagine life without him. I wouldn’t want to. He gives our lives meaning. There isn’t anything I could say that wouldn’t sound cliché. The truth is, there aren’t words to express it.

current mood: energetic

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Wednesday, August 16th, 2006
2:17 pm
I love you.

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Wednesday, July 12th, 2006
11:18 am
It's a boy!

current mood: indescribable

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Thursday, June 8th, 2006
11:28 am
After a few days in New Orleans, we're rethinking moving back home.

We stayed at the B&B Leslie used to work at, and wound up leaving 3 hours after paying for a second night there for the simple fact that neither of us could breathe. There was no reason to stay any longer than absolutely necessary. That's not my life anymore. It's not my home anymore. I don't want to wake up every morning to the desolate streets of the parish. There are no more smiling faces. My idealistic and eager New Orleans friends are in love with a city...with a lifestyle...that is no longer my own. I'm a mommy now...I'm happy now. I'm happy here, away from refineries, in the clean air and safe neighborhoods. I have a wonderful, supportive husband with whom I'm very much in love. It's senseless now, especially now, to go back to a home filled with wounds and bad memories.

I just get lonely, I think. Safety in the womb complex. Ambivalence. Yes, AMBIVALENCE. God damned pregnancy hormones. To the point of an anxiety attack.

I feel the baby move frequently now. My tummy's growing and I can hardly fit into my clothes. Terry comes to Lane Bryant with me to find a bra that will support my swelling breasts, and after seeing my discouraged face when finding out that IN STORE only goes up to a DDD, he had the sales girl bring me the entire selection of 42DDD bras they had, so I could find one that would work for now. I fall more in love every day. THEN, I'll lie awake at night, and wonder whether or not I'm too young for this...to be a mother...to have someone depend solely on me. I worry about what happens, should anything ever happen to Terry...now or 30 years from now. I get scared, have a panic attack, remind myself to breathe. Tell myself it will pass... And it does.

My therapist tells me I'm far too creative, in the worst way. Those damned hypothetical's that I conjure up... One day at a time. One hour at a time, really.

He's sleeping now. Still worn from that drive...11 hours...straight through...While I slept peacefully... with infinite trust in him.

current mood: content

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Thursday, June 1st, 2006
11:43 am
Jesus...I forgot to post this 2 days ago...

Happy Birthday to the BEST friend a woman could have.....


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Monday, May 29th, 2006
7:04 pm
I'll be home for a few days in less than a week.

It couldn't come at a better time. I desperately miss my friends.

current mood: excited

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Tuesday, April 25th, 2006
6:43 pm
Be glad for me. I've learned how to shut the fuck up, and let him say what he has to say....

Tonight, we'll have a date under the stars and in the swimming pool. I can be a dirty little girl as long as I'm quiet.

And you little pothead jew, if you'd leave your number, I'd call you back. All I know is your area code.

current mood: relaxed

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Monday, April 24th, 2006
6:45 pm
Today, I made him banana pancakes.


current mood: grateful

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Thursday, April 13th, 2006
6:22 pm
God must have a plan for me.

The son of a bitch won't let me die.

Thank you, God, for not letting me die.


current mood: grateful

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Monday, April 10th, 2006
7:33 pm
I heard the baby's heartbeat today.

I cried.

current mood: loved

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Wednesday, April 5th, 2006
3:18 pm
I miss Brittany.


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Tuesday, April 4th, 2006
7:37 pm
So, I couldn't see the baby while having the ultrasound done. :-( I tried my absolute hardest...and just...couldn't see it. I did, however, see a few photos of what it looks like. :-) It's got little arms and little legs, tiny little fingers and tiny little toes. I fall more in love every day.

current mood: excited

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Monday, April 3rd, 2006
3:36 pm
I spent last night in the ER....with pretty severe lower abdominal cramping.

9 hours...spent with Terry right beside me.


It was acid reflux. The doctor came in the room after the ultrasound and said, "Your baby is 15 weeks and 5 days old, according to measurements, and very healthy."

Those were the most beautiful words I've ever heard in my life.

current mood: in love

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Saturday, March 25th, 2006
8:21 am
After a day and a half of fighting and worries, he crept into my room and knelt by my bed, whispering, asking if I wanted him to stay or leave. I pulled him into bed and we made love.

He's sleeping now. He stayed up all night fretting over ugly words that were exchanged and tears that were shed earlier in the day.

I'll wake him up with coffee and a blowjob.

current mood: cheerful

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Friday, March 24th, 2006
2:23 pm

current mood: Betrayed

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Monday, March 20th, 2006
8:41 pm


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Wednesday, March 15th, 2006
9:42 am - A drink that isn't watered down
I'm happy. I am. I love my husband. I'm an excited expecting mother. I'm a little stressed about not knowing where we're going to live, knowing that Austin is only temporary and not being able to really settle, but I'm happy.

I'm struggling. I have nightmares and wake up screaming. I dream of home, and the flood, and drowning, and trying to save the people I lost...and trying to save the dogs, my babies. I lie in my bed and wish I had been there. I wish I had stayed. I wish I hadn't checked into the hospital. I wish I hadn't woken up after taking all of those xanbars. I wish I didn't feel any of this.

I'm selfish. I lie there thinking about death...almost fantasizing about it. I wonder, if it weren't for the baby, for being pregnant, whether anything would stop me. I wonder if I could leave Terry...alone. Harder yet, I wonder if I couldn't. It seems I can't fit in grieving with all that's going on in my life. I push it to the back, deliberately. When I sleep, it sneaks forward. I don't want him to see me in pieces. He worries about me, he gets frustrated because he can't fix me.

I had a dream about Bobby last night. I dreamt about he and his wife, actually, which is strange, considering I've never met her. I dreamt a very pregnant self made a mess in their bathroom, and they forgave me and cleaned it up.

I miss home. I miss my friends. Hopefully I'll see a few at Jazzfest. Until then, I'll try my hardest to keep it together. I'll continue praying each night to the Blessed Mother 'til I fall asleep, asking her to watch over my family and friends, keep us safe.

I feel better having made this confession.

current mood: hopeful

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Tuesday, March 14th, 2006
4:20 pm - Yayyyyy!!!!
I just made the hotel reservations...april 27-may 1st. We're doing the first weekend of Jazzfest, with Bob Dylan, Dave Matthews, Ani DiFranco, and the Boss.

I'm so excited!

I hope this is as enjoyable for Terry as I anticipate it will be for me. He practically grew up on the fairgrounds and hasn't been around there much since spreading his father's ashes there.

God...now all I have to think about is parking.


current mood: hyper

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