Eco Smackdown.

*A note from the author: Well, now I’ve gone and done it. I wrote this piece a few days ago, and was tinkering with it, when Amy Keroes, editor of Mommy Track’d, asked what my new topic was going to be. “Well, it’s a rant,” I said. Rather smugly, I’m sure. “About SUVs, and some other stuff.” And then she said, oh good, it would fit right in with Risa Green’s piece. Had I read Risa Green’s piece? No, I hadn’t, and I suddenly wondered whether mine would be too much like hers. But I was on my way out the door, and didn’t have time to check.

 

When I returned late last night I popped open Mommy Track’d so I could read Risa’s column, and well, I would say that our topics are in fact, polar opposites. (Little global warming joke, there. Haha!) A very good, honest piece, by the way. But now I am in a bind. Because now my column sounds like a horrible diatribe against Risa Green. Which it was not intended to be! Oh, shit. I really don’t want to start a Mommy Track’d feud, everyone here is so nice. Risa is nice. But, well, I’ve written the damn thing. And I do stand behind my words. And I don’t know if it would have been worse posting this simultaneously with Risa’s piece, or better now, when I can pathetically backpedal and desperately explain myself. But here’s the piece, the way I wrote it. Before I read Risa’s peon to her SUV. It’s a Mommy Track’d Smackdown! Even Betsy, the Mommy Track'd cartoonist is in on the action. Check out her Eco-Comic in Funny Papers.

 

I don’t want to get all holier-than-thou on you, but honestly, I am just continually astounded by those denizens of this fair city (and others like it across the country, also small towns, suburbs, hamlets) who continue to drive untenably large, gas-guzzling SUV-type passenger cars. People who lumber around town in outsized military vehicles more suited to a harsh desert terrain than crowded streets; vehicles that get about six miles to the gallon in the city; sturdy all-terrain vehicles that have possibly never seen a mountain road; vehicles I cannot believe are not an embarrassment to drive.

 

I know many SUV drivers who are suitably embarrassed to have bought one in the first place, and can’t wait to get rid of theirs-- and of course, many drivers are not in a financial position to just pop off and trade in for a new Prius. But I am surprised at how many brand-spanking-new road hogs I am seeing on the street these days. New, as in just bought. Just bought, after the Al Gore movie, after floods, hurricanes, droughts, and every obvious consequence of human-caused climate change short of raining toads. Seriously, are these people living in a cave?

 

mpolhemus
10.08.08

It is like you are taking the thoughts in my head and putting them on to paper in a hysterically funny way. When I finally get my Viking range,(2024?) I will have you over for a martini and a great dinner!

neuromum
10.06.08

Maybe there need to be more community resources around to help people start using other methods of transport. I've recently been trying to transition away from using my car, and figuring out how to do the grocery shopping on my bike with 2 kids has been a challenge!! We are making progress, but we might have got here a lot quicker if there were some resources around to help us figure out different bike attachments, good biking roads, etc.

Anyway, excellent article. I only mean to point out that part of what people lack is knowledge about more green alternatives.

jenc
09.14.08

I couldn't agree more! So frustrating that some people feel so entitled to the world's resources that they do whatever they like...Rant away!

Chris
07.22.08

I actually don't see that you and Risa are on the opposite page. I think that you're both working toward the same goal; you're just ahead of her. You note in your column that economics can slow some drivers transition away from SUVs. There are other factors as well that act as heavy loads to drag into a new way of living (cave-living husbands, for instance).

rdonohue
07.22.08

Thank you for sharing and agree 100%! I'm tired of subsidizing for and arguing with people that don't believe human activity is having a negative impact on this planet. Our children and their children deserve a better future.

rdonohue
07.22.08

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