"Gaia doesn't play dice." Albert Einstein


Unnecessary Chances
Friday, February 13, 1998

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A Summary of
The Gaia Theory

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risks are part of life; everything's a shitshoot. Life reacts to risk in much the same way. As individuals, we avoid unnecessary risks. I drive my car at a safe speed, given the road conditions, particularly when my family or friends are passengers. I look both ways when crossing the street and admonish others to do the same. Although I own a home in what is regarded as a safe neighborhood, I lock my doors each evening before going to bed. I judiciously avoid certain parts of town after dark. If the woods around my house were still inhabited by wolves and bears, I would carry a gun outside. Despite my due diligence, I know that my "luck" can run out at any time. For years, we've taken for granted and blatantly ignored the Earth as our home in this all-too-brief existence. Comparatively (and crudely) speaking, we're a mere fart in the cosmic time scale. Yet we're doing horrific damage to the Earth in only a few thousand years. Are the oceans, land and atmosphere unlimited in their punishment absorbing capacity? Definitely not. Without being conscious of what we do to our home in this universe, the proverbial shit will hit the fan someday and everything will shut down. If we're not more careful, it'll be sooner rather than much later that our collective luck will run out. Feel lucky? Go ahead, roll those dice, baby!

The Gaia Theory.
This one of the most exciting and elegant new scientific theories to emerge in the 20th century. It's the work of a British scientist, James Lovelock, who believes that the earth is itself a living organism, and that life actively creates the environment it needs to survive, by maintaining environmental factors like temperature, humidity and atmosphere. His theory has been embraced by the environmental movement and has stirred up controversy in the scientific establishment.
The Gaia Hypothesis gives us a completely new view of the evolution of the Earth and may well be an incredibly productive tool for studying the complex ecological interrelationships that allow life to exist on our planet.
Back in the 80s, PBS-TV did a 4-hour special on The Gaia Theory. I taped it on my trusty Sony Super Beta 900, which I still use (sure, I have a Sony Super-VHS too, but the beta format is still far technically superior), and was looking at it again last night after watching TNTs Babylon 5. Both are inter-related in philosophy. The premise of B5 is that Earth was dying as a result of neglect and abuse, so humankind had to leave. Gaia alerts us to the premise that this could happen.
This is not tree hugger territory, although most certainly some kooks do lurk in the theory area, muddying the waters with their half-baked, left wing nut agendas. This is a profound philosophy on how the Earth lives and operates in spite of us.
For some, it's become a religious mandate to care for the Earth.

Signs of Trouble.
Tens-of-thousands of animals and native species plants die every day. Some become extinct. Some species become depleted and never return; others die in cycles but reproduce in enough numbers to maintain the species presence. And still other decline gradually and we never notice their passing.
It's a real shame when animals die as a result of man's stupidity. The Gaia Theory maintains that (wo)man as protector of the Earth screws up the environment, the Earth exacts revenge by cleansing itself of what it doesn't need to survive. Kind of like cutting out a cancer to prolong an organism's lifespan.
I've been reading more and more about it as a result of the Brazilian Rain Forest (Amazon Jungle) being severely slashed and burned for profit. The co-Gaia theory that AIDS, ebola, anthrax and dozens of other viruses have been unleashed from the devastated jungles is intriguing, but unproven.

More Signs of Trouble.
A subtle parallel: I've seen this wholesale death happen on a micro-scale in customers' water gardens. The signs are subtle at first; when the life support system gets into trouble, telltale signs develop and certain bellwether animals begin dying. Things collapse quickly and a huge effort is required to reverse the deleterious effects.
There's an old axiom that if you have frogs, garden snakes and toads, you've got a healthy pond. These Amphibians and Reptiles are the first to die off as the general health of the water garden deteriorates, through any insidious means. I usually introduce frogs or toads into a recently-installed water garden in the egg form, several weeks after the pond and fish have stabilized. Their long term success is a major factor in water garden or pond management.
Pond Management is one course we're glad to help anyone with. Here's a couple of our advocacy ads on the subject. But to try to explain The Gaia Theory to most people in any detail is abjectly futile. Most would think I'm nuts. Better to read about it for yourself and deduce what you may.
CNN puts on a good show called Earth Matters on Sunday afternoons. Since I work from noon to 5, I tape it and watch it later.

Living Christmas Trees.
I've taken the Christmas Tree industry on in this southern York County and northern Maryland region about Live v Dead Trees. Initially, they lost huge amounts of business, but switched to also offering (greatly inferior) live B&B evergreens for the holidays. With puny 12" rootballs instead of 22" for a 6-7ft tree, there's very little real chance of their survival the following Spring.
I also wrote a nice piece for David Siegel's Journal in '96, called Evergreen. Spend a few minutes and read why dead, cut trees are not the way to go when choosing a Christmas tree.
Again, I'm not a tree hugger; I just hate to waste quality, living things when there's so much shit in this world that needs, nay cries out for disposal, not distribution.

Today is the day when that stupidly-commercial groundhog Punxsutawney Phil supposedly comes out of his den, either sees or doesn't see his shadow and determines when we have Winter for another 6 weeks. A quaint tale gounded in stupidity.
With Phil's accuracy at a pathetic 59%, and The Farmer's Almanac at 93%, it's a no brainer as to which one I consult. Either way, I know that Spring's quite a way off: April 17th is the last frost date around here in USDA Zone 6.
In the real world, we shoot f*cking groundhogs famous or not for the terrible damage they do to the Earth, if we can't capture and relocate them to an uninhabited area. I don't like Killing any creature, but so far, I've wasted two very large critters who've burrowed under some of my buildings and through the growing fields with huge networks of tunnels. There are still dozens out there to deal with in the future. And I have plenty of ammo. I've never tried groundhog stew, but the grateful, local dogs sure do make a meal out of the carcasses when I throw the 20-30lb critters into the back fields for their supper.
It's truly hard to believe that 15-20,000 people showed up, bought souvenirs and watched this groundhog shit today. Comraderie? Nah. With those idiots, someone could probably box up dogshit and sell it to them by the pound. The Commomwealth (aka communist) of Pennsylvania participates in this scam by promoting on their junk website. A real pathetic commentary.

I'd just finished installing MSIE v4.01 and was trying out the new browser, when I heard the explosion. I knew it wasn't Netscape's browsers complaining about the new addition to the O/S; it had to be something big.
Sure enough, the story appeared on TV and radio within minutes. ABC and MSNBC carried live reports from the scene of devastation. What a mess. Things don't often explode here in York, so when it happens, the entire city is alerted.
Living on the east side of York, I heard the blast from the west side where York International is located. I thought at first it was a small sonic boom from a low-flying jet.
One dead; dozens injured and lots of physical damage to the facility. Very sad. I hope they find out why.

Good Riddance.
An evil, lying bitch was executed albeit 14 years too late but terminated nevertheless.
After thousands of morons tried to get the murdering bitch pardoned or sentence commuted, someone finally woke up and did the right thing. Pat Robertson, Jesse Jackson and The Pope pleaded for her perverted, worthless life. f*ck the bigot Pat, Jesse Boy and the fish-eating Pope to death. Offer some goddamned prayers to the victims and their families, not their stinking whacker. It's outrageous that anyone would want a heinous murderer to live. Justice and death should be quick and sure.
Filth like this Tucker whore need to die as I've said dozens of times before after one appeal and a strict one year as a time limit; not 14 f*cking years at $47,000 per year of our taxpayer monies. What the hell's wrong with this ignorant, myopic country and its unbalanced, lopsided legal system? For one, it's run and ruined by liberal scumbags who want to rehab every criminal, pervert and degenerate in order to generate more jobs, increase government bureaucracy and turn the country into a welfare state.
Add in rapists and child molesters to those already being executed, and the world would be a much nicer place in which to live. At least the innocents would be protected.

"Hey Moe, Hey Larry!"
I had to laugh. The picture of Bill Gates with a custard cream pie smeared all over his face and glasses made my day. Seems he's got friends all around the world. I thought the only MS-Haters were here in the USA.
It reminded me of The Three Stooges at their best. Guess which one Bill is. Woo-woo-woo-woo!

Got 'em!
Finally. A witness to the Bubba-Monica phantom encounter. I hope s/he holds up under the coming intense scrutiny.
I really think it would have been cheaper for Slick Willie The Bubba to hire some prostitutes; his legal bills are exorbitant for some simple groping and grabbing.

Pricey Digs.
When I worked in New York City's Madison Ave advertising world, rent was in the $40-60/sqft range for the upper office floors. And that's no bargain either. Midtown is expensive.
The just released list, which I've not seen previously, of the World's Top Ten Most Expensive Addresses includes Mad Ave on the list, down from #4 last year. This outrageous cost must be for street-level storefront space. At $375/sqft, a 1,000sqft store has to sell a lot of anything just to pay the rent.
I can remember the exodus from Midtown by dozens of large ad agencies in the 80s, because of the high rents. Most moved down to the 20's, below The Fashion District, The Photo District and Chinatown where $7-9/sqft was the norm.
By then, I'd had enough of the business and NYC and was on my way to something else.

I use the phrase, Rube Goldberg contraption all the time as it applies to something jury-rigged or contrived. Weird stuff, no one else would even think of doing. The un-official site is online.

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