New Equation Needed: Apply Within

I valet at a restaurant. Often, at the beginning of a shift, I’ll check the reservations. This will let me know what kind of night to expect. Like most people in 2010, I need money to survive, so when I check the reservation book, I’m hoping it’s busy. The other night it looked rather slow, but there was a reservation for a large group of 20 people.

Upon seeing this, I caught myself thinking: “Here’s hoping they arrive in 20 cars.

I examined this thought and found it funny and strange. Another me, in a context outside of my job, would obviously prefer these people walk or carpool. It appears my ideals of conservation are at odds with my desire (and necessity) to make money. But it’s not just me. The car companies also hope these 20 people own automobiles and wear them out quickly. And the Oil Companies? To them, “carpool”, must be a dirty word. I imagine the word creates an uneasy feeling, like “cholesterol” or “diabetes” might to a McDonald’s executive.

My aim is not to vilify these companies. After all, they are largely made of people who, like myself, must earn a living. My scorn is directed at the system and our outdated modes of thinking, for as long as consumption = profit, it’s like we’re paid to burn our own house down.

(click to enlarge)

Here’s an Earth Day card for our planet, courtesy one of my favorite living artists, Richard Thompson.

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