An Open Letter to the Graduating Class.

Is there anyway that ordinary everyday people, like you and I, can make a difference in the world?

Where to begin??

“It was a cold, foggy night… His hands clammy and damp, detective Jones reached to his holster to pull his gun…..”

Lol nope!,- don’t think so!

See, what I’m trying to do here, is come up with something decently interesting to say about global warming and climate change.

Putting on my Sunday best about the top ways to save the environment!,- to say something inspiring, and positively captivating!

In a world where the tendency is for the majority of individuals to wash their hands of the situation, and instead focus on making that cash, while at the same time, dismissing the environmental contamination from fossil fuels as being just one more thing in this great big, huge world that’s beyond our control,- there must be some way to get people to really care and take action!

Some magical words to inspire legions of people to go out and change the world!!

If only I could master the words,..

(*insert sigh here*)

I could become a social media icon!

Take my picture on the balcony!

Would be a dream come true, right??

But here’s the thing, see,-

The central dilemma of the equation:

The action that I’m hoping for here,- that we’re all hoping for,- to be adapted to by the general masses, is something that requires a consistent amount of self-sacrifice..

Occurring over a looooooooong period of time..

In a world where people want instant satisfaction.

And adrenalizing rushes..

And the subject matter inspiring the action,- which is the topic of global warming and climate change,- is mainly about ammonia, carbon dioxide, methane, and a class of gases called greenhouse gases. With their negative impacts mostly delayed until the ‘far-in-the-distance’, easy to push ‘out-of-sight’ and ‘out-of-mind’ future..

See the dilemma??

Never gonna happen!

And no matter how hard I try, this is never going to be like reading a super crime novel.

Well ok then!..

Never say die!

With that thought in mind, here goes nothing!!

(*insert drumroll here!*)

An Open Letter to the Graduating Class. What is the first and most important thing we can do to Save The Environment?

“You have the freedom to be yourself, your true self, here and now,
and nothing can stand in your way…”

a quote from
(‘Jonathan Livingston Seagull’)

As I’m writing to you today, I’m sitting on the beach on the outer banks of North Carolina.

It’s a bright and sunny day with a cool breeze, my toes are buried in the sand and I’m surrounded by all kinds of seabirds. A half a dozen birds called ‘yellowlegs’ are standing like sentries at the surfs edge, watching for critters to gobble up. There’s a flock of seagulls flying all around me, and out in front of me, there’s a few of these great big pelicans, dive-bombing for fish,- smacking straight down into the ocean headfirst!

Best of all, there’s a cute little sand crab on the beach about 10 feet away. His eyes are like two little round saucers, he’s very shy, and I’m pretty sure he wishes that I would just go away!

I see him peeping up out at me from his little hole, and scooting out about a foot or so. Then, if I move even one itty-bitty little finger, he just zzzzips back into his little hole!

I’ve named him “mr. skittles,” and I’m thinking he had way too much caffeine this morning lol!

When I was a child I spent many a summer here on the outer banks, vacationing with my family. Names of places like ‘Manteo’ and ‘Wanchese’ were household words for me as a kid.

I grew up collecting shells at Nags Head. Scampering around the Hatteras lighthouse. Skipping stones on the Roanoke. Exploring the wonders of the tidepools.

Everywhere falling in love with nature!

Now, as an adult, I’m reading the oceans are threatened by acid rain.

Scientists are telling us that the sea levels are rising, due to global warming and the melting of the polar ice.

The coral reefs of the world are slowly dying away.

And on top it all,- experts are predicting that by the year 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish!

As I sit here gazing out over the ocean, and feeling the amazing life energy emanating from it, I’m just sitting here asking myself,-

“What are we doing here??”

As I sit here, contemplating the horrible manner in which humanity is treating our planet, there’s a couple of metaphors that come to mind for me.

They help me wrap my mind around the situation. I would like to share them with you here, because I’m hoping they are useful for you as well..

A great big little experiment..

Think of this first metaphor of being a microcosm;- like a mini-world!

It goes something like this:-

Bacteria are one-celled (unicellular) microorganisms that are so small, they can only be seen with a microscope, but as they reproduce they can form rapidly into huge, fuzzy colonies that can be easily seen with the naked eye.

There is an easy-to-do science class experiment, commonly performed in classrooms all around the world by the most qualified of instructors, with the sole purpose of demonstrating how quickly bacteria can reproduce in a geometric progression. This occurs when one cell splits into two cells through a process called binary fission.

This process of growth can begin quickly,- like in as little as 20 minutes!

The way this experiment works is that, under the care of the instructor, sterile powdered agar (a plant-based gelatin-like substance) is mixed with water and nutrients, and heated and poured into an empty petri dish. A source of bacteria can then be added to the dish.

The most common way of adding bacteria to the equation is to place a dirty, bacteria-laden coin right in the center of the dish, following which, the bacteria will start to grow immediately. Over a period of days students can watch as the dish fills up with the fuzzy bacteria.

As the nutrients are devoured, the fuzzy bacteria completely fill the dish!

And then finally at last, when the nutrients are all depleted, the colony simply dies off.

And that’s it!

End of the experiment!


What does this microcosm say about things out here in the real world? Do little things imitate big things?

Like on a planetary scale, on a globe all covered with tiny peoples like ants on a gigantic anthill?

I’m sure you can see where I’m going with this.

It seems to me, the answer is yes.

Global Warming?

Yep,- it’s a real thing!

Global Habitat Destruction?, and Global Climate Change?

Yep,- also a real thing!

We are living in a closed system! And it’s happening slowly, all around us. It’s simple math,- just like a giant petri dish!

You can call it air pollution, water pollution, plastic pollution, global warming, environmental destruction,- doesn’t matter! Give it any name you want! Break out your microscope and examine any little cross-section in your cross-hairs that you want!

The simple truth is that all of our ‘stuff’; our smog, and our trash, and all the rest of our waste, is trapped in here with us!

No matter how big our globe seems to be, it’s actually a finite space, with a ceiling created by gravity.

At the end of the day, we are burning up our resources, chopping down tree after tree, while our vehicles, and our factories, and our lifestyles, and our ever-growing population, are filling our air and water with pollutants, toxifying our environment and heating up our world.

Now, this may surprise you, but I’m going to admit straight away, I’m actually not a scientist!

(Shocker, right?,- lol)

And there are those who would say that perhaps, just perhaps,- I’m not the brightest candle in the forest either..

Well,- I agree. The truth is, I’m just a simple, ordinary, everyday kinda guy.

(Imagine you can hear Lynyrd Skynyrd playing, ‘Simple Man’, softly in the background, whilst I gaze wistfully into the distance…)

And as a simple man,- I’m asking a simple question:

Are we no better than a dish full of mindless bacteria?

Gobbling up our resources,- and mindlessly expanding?

Until there is nothing left?

Here is the second metaphor I would like to share:

I call it ‘modern life’.

It’s a picture I’m trying to paint, and it looks like this:-

The adults of my generation, just like every generation before us pretty much, are basically spending our days sitting on a set of railroad tracks, with our heads down.

We are looking at our phones. We are checking our graphs to see how our stocks are doing, plotting our next move, planning our retirement, paying our bills, and we are mowing our lawns and trimming our hedges. All-in all, we are doing very well in keeping up with the Joneses!

Presently using our charts and graphs to determine how we can maximize earnings during covid, and its aftermath.

What will the economy do?

Should I buy?,- or should I sell?

All the while, there is a headlight coming from a train that has appeared in the distance. It’s just a faint ‘twinkling-star’ kind of light at the moment…

Just a bit far away!

But with a few drips of water, tinkling down from one of those melting glaciers, (going plink,… plink,… plink…)

Accompanied by a few very well-captioned, very dramatic-looking photos of a hungry polar bear, starving and desperately scavenging for food in some distant, faraway land of melting ice,…

There’s really nothing for us to worry about.

It’s all so far away..

That train is just a faint tremor in the ground at our feet…

The question is, are we going to wait, and turn our heads at the very last moment?

When the ground at our feet begins to shake and rumble with a roar?

Yep!:- That’s another yes!

Most of us! But not all!

There was a movie that came out on Netflix recently. I feel that it sort of reflects the same theme. Maybe you saw it too? It’s called “Don’t Look Up!”

In this film, the main characters, led by characters played by Leonardo Di Caprio and Jennifer Lawrence, attempt to alert the world that a dangerous meteor is approaching, and it can only be stopped if action is taken right away!

**Spoiler Alert**

(If you don’t want to know how the movie ends, shield your eyes quickly lol!)

In the end of the movie, the characters find their efforts to raise awareness were in vain. The corporations muscle them out and push them aside, and they accept their fiery fate of doom.

A very depressing ending!

Well, I’m that guy who can never accept such a fate!

Think of me as an eternal optimist!

I’d be that guy out there shootin’ a pea-shooter at the meteor while it’s crashing down on my head lol!

Along those lines,- I will never give up on this world.

The reason I am writing you this letter to you today is because I know, in my heart, that our world needs a generation of brave, young, and fearless leaders.

I know we need that more than anything.

We need a generation that is immune to the traditional fears.

Like the fear of dying without money.

We need a generation that is not afraid to be different, and not afraid to be looked down upon by their elders or their peers for doing something different.

We need a generation that is motivated by something other than the greed and lust for gold and power and comfort, that soooo much, characterizes our world.

A generation that is not afraid to break ranks.

We need a generation that looks to the future…

Could this be you?

I’m closing my eyes, feeling the sunshine on my face, and hearing the voices of the birds in the air, and the sounds of the waves breaking in front of me,-

And I’m reflecting on the awesome natural beauty of this world,..

And I’m reflecting on how precious every moment of this life is,…

Reminding myself,-

Hearing these words in one ear,-

“From ashes to ashes, and dust to dust…”

And then hearing a voice whispering in my other ear,-

“He who dies with the most toys wins.”

The Third Part of the Situation,- The Complication and the Keys of Change

I see the first metaphor above as being an apt description of this great experiment that we are all a part of. (referring to this great big giant petri dish that we all live in!)

The second metaphor, modern life, I present as an apt description of humanities primary response to the situation;- an attempt to continue the great expansion while pretending the problem doesn’t exist.

These two simple truths are compounded by a third simple truth.

And that is, at this time in history, and for the foreseeable future, an environmentally-friendly lifestyle is more expensive, and less convenient than the carbon-based alternatives.

In preparing for this, everything I’ve read about pollution, in all it’s different forms, mentions this fact at some point in the article, whatever the article is about.

The environmentally-friendly alternative is still too expensive to be viable for the general public to be interested…

It may not always be that way, but at least for now, that’s the way it is. An environmentally-friendly lifestyle is the narrower, less convenient path. Requiring self-sacrifice.

That makes it a three part situation.

That’s what we’re up against!

The challenge for saving the environment is reversing that third part of the equation, by fostering environmentally-friendly products, and making them cheaper, and more advantageous, for the masses.

To achieve this task, we need the impact of a special generation, composed of an elite group of individuals, willing to invest time, and energy, and money, into environmentally-friendly solutions.

And that’s where you come in!

This is a great moment for you to gain a sense of clarity and purpose in your life!

Saving the planet is a great choice!

One that future generations will thank you for!

Life is Choice

In my own life, I have decided to live a life of service, and self-sacrifice, by choosing an environmentally friendly lifestyle. I can’t wait to share the details with you!

I’ve been working towards this for a long time, but I have to admit,- I still have much room for improvement! I’m highly flawed, and still learning, and growing!

And I’m inviting you to join me on this amazing journey!

One last thing: if you are one of the four people a month to read this far lol!..

In my final words here before you leave today,- I’m asking you to go and do one thing:

Go and look at yourself in the mirror, and ask yourself,-

Will your generation be the same as mine?

Or will your generation be the ones to make the change?

Please remember,-

It all starts with you!

“Be the Change you wish to see in the World…”

The first and most important thing we can each do to save the environment is to recognize the three challenges outlined above, and realize that we, as individuals, hold the keys to overcome them.

By sowing the seeds of change! The ability to self-sacrifice is truly what empowers you!

As you move forward in your life today, my hope and wish for you is that you will always hold this feeling close to your heart.

You are important and you can make a difference!

Thank you for being here, and thank you for taking the time to visit, and read, and listen..

sincerely yours,

John E

It’s positive karma!

Or continue with:

What is Global Warming?

Part 2.

What is Global Warming?

Based on the measurements that we have available to us since record keeping first began in 1880’s, the facts seem to indicate that our world is getting warmer. This is the trend that we are referring to when we use the phrase ‘global warming.’ Before we debate whether this is true or not, let’s take a look to see what the scientists are saying. If you’ve heard of global warming but aren’t familiar with the details, this is a great place to get started. Empower yourself with knowledge.  The first step in saving the environment is educating yourself:

Learn more


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