Thou: Saving The Earth, One Smackdown At A Time
by Roz Warren
over and shuts off the water as his wife brushes
her teeth. You dont need to run the
water when the toothbrush is in your mouth,
he chides. Youre wasting a valuable
marriage is a valuable resource too, Deb
responds. And if you want to conserve it,
youll get the hell out of this bathroom and
let me brush in peace.
your self, says Terry. But when this
lovely planet becomes a cesspool due to just this
kind of thoughtless waste, you may come to regret
reluctantly, turns off the water. The planet is
saved. But her mood is ruined.
the bathroom smiling. Hes discovered the
unique thrill that comes from saving the earth
and annoying his wife at the same time.
old Sara conserves water by showering
infrequently. Youll never attract a
boyfriend! protests her mother.
attract an environmentalist. says Sara
smugly. And well live happily ever
after, working together to rescue the earth from
people like you. What teenage girl
doesnt love to drive her mother nuts? And
Sara has found a great, Green way to do just that.
Are you a
hostile person who gets into trouble when you
express your anger? Would you like to annoy the
hell out of friends, family and co-workers and
get away with it? Then join folks like Terry and
Sara, who have mastered the art of being Greener
Than Thou. Youll drive people crazy. And
they cant tell you to go to hell -- because
youre saving the planet!
Thou is a game anyone can play.
Shes an aggressive recycler. She never
misses an opportunity to guilt trip friends and
family about tossing a magazine into the trash.
or committing the heinous ecocrime of enjoying
Or Seth. Seth
refuses to flush. Flushing whenever
you go wastes water, he proclaims. Even
when his room mates protest that the stench that
builds up in their tiny shared bathroom makes
them want to puke. I love planet earth,
Seth says proudly. Deal with it.
these folks could quietly model good ecological
behavior, setting an example that others will
want to follow, in a manner that is harmonious
rather than provocative. But wheres the fun
dad recently divorced her mom after decades of
marriage and bought a grand new house with his
brand new wife. How does Greener Than
Thou Liza respond?
visits Dad in his new home, Liza saves the planet
by unplugging every appliance not actually in use. You
do realize, she explains as she moves
through the living room unplugging everything,
that these things gobble electricity even
when they arent turned on?
you wouldnt do that, Dads new
wife says through gritted teeth as Liza unplugs
the flat screen television.
just helping you reduce your egregious carbon
footprint, Liza explains patiently.
My mother raised me to care about this
Liza is not
only saving the earth while annoying Dads
new bride, but she can look forward to
entertaining her mother by telling her about it
later. Liza is a veritable GTT black belt.
Give her a present, and within a year,
youll get it right back, wrapped in used
newspaper. Her friends call her a tightwad, but
Susan proudly claims eco-hero status. I
refuse to buy one more piece of useless junk. Our
landfills are too full already. Jane
wont let you throw away even a single piece
of paper. You can still use this!
shell cry, grabbing it out of the
wastepaper basket. Just turn it over.
Theres plenty of room on the other side!
When a pal bites into a burger, Sam invariably
remarks, It takes 350 gallons of water to
produce just one hamburger. You ought to care
about that, even if youre unconcerned about
how bad eating dead cow is for your heart.
have all discovered how satisfying it is to save
the earth while annoying other people. You can
too! Learn to express your own hostility in a
socially acceptable and eco responsible way. If
you put your mind to it, Im sure
youll come up with hundreds of ingenious
ways to save the planet by zinging friends,
family and co-workers. They may all end up hating
you but Mother Earth will love you for it.
first appeared on www.womensvoicesforchange.org)