oui oui

i did some research on the paris agreement/accord/whatever since i wanted to know more and figured you might too! 

the most incredible thing about the PA is that every country is taking care of its own business of its own accord and is actually doing it, with 202o as the goal start date. each country sets goals to combat climate change, and all countries except three have signed on of their own volition because IT’S THE RIGHT THING TO DO.

for the record, nicaragua at first decided not to sign the agreement because it wasn’t RADICAL ENOUGH. the president said 90% of its energy will be renewable by 2020, and they wanted countries to be punished for not meeting goals. (they’ve since are considering reconsidering because they don’t want to be lumped in the same category as the ridiculous US.) the US, of course, is out because trump. and syria isn’t a part of it because syria’s a war zone. 

so.

(i mean, even north korea’s on board. really, DT?)

the countries that are a part of the PA have agreed to some stipulations:

  1. they want to hold the increase in global average temp to below (like, way below) 2ºC above pre-industrial levels. ideally, the limit would be 1.5ºC pre-industrial levels. (pre-industrial means pre-1750.) for the record, pre-industrial average world temp was 13.8ºC (56.84F) and in 2014, average world temp was about 0.8 C warmer than that. so, the world’s countries want to keep that at 1.5º or less, with AT MOST, 2º.  (remember average world temp does not mean average MN temp. when idiots huurrr durrr about global warming when it’s -15ºF, please just roll your eyes so hard they end up in the snowbank across the street.)*
  2. they want to make sure that climate change does not affect food production. there are a lot of people on the planet, and we need to feed them (preferably NOT corn, but we’re using that as an example ugh). think about the impact of a global increase in temperature on the US bread basket – all those plains may just end up being desert that doesn’t support food production. insane weather patterns also affect food stores, as there may be droughts or floods.
  3. and finally, the first-world countries recognize the benefits they had with the industrial revolution and how coal and other polluting methods to create the standard of living they now have. through this agreement, the countries that had that benefit will help out the developing countries to make sure their paths to development is a greener one. 

witheartha couple important points:

this is completely voluntary.

and there is no repercussions if a country drops out or doesn’t meet its goals. 

THAT’S how serious the world is taking this. 

so, here’s DT’s quote on why he decided to leave the PA:

“The agreement is a massive redistribution of United States’ wealth to other countries,” Trump said. “It’s to give their country an economic edge over the United States. That’s not going to happen while I’m president. I’m sorry.”

let’s talk about that massive redistribution of US wealth. that’s how point 3 above is handled. the developed countries that had the advantage of early development are going to commit $100billion a year to help the developing countries and overall greenification of the earth. in march last year, the US gave $3billion to the green climate fund, and as of now, there is $10billion in it. i believe it works as a grant system. it will also directly help countries most affected by climate change, like small island countries.  

now, here’s a wrench i’m going to throw in the system. heard of the international monetary fund (IMF)? i feel like this is a perfect thing for the IMF to jump into. the IMF is “189 countries working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world.”

if there’s ever a time to use the money in the IMF to do all those things, i think this is it. as of 2016, the IMF had about $668billion in it. 

anyway, that’s an argument for another day. 

so, once DT announced the US withdrawal from the PA, it’s not like we suddenly aren’t in it. part of the provisions, even though it’s voluntary, is that it will take a good four years for the US to get out of it. a country can’t even begin withdrawal proceedings until it’s been in the agreement for three years, and after the withdrawal has been sent, it will be active one year after it’s been filed. the earliest the US can get out of the PA? Nov. 4, 2020…the day after the next presidential election

(seriously, all this brouhaha may be for naught.)

so, that’s a lot of political information on the PA and doesn’t really go into what countries are actually planning on doing as far as greenification. i was listening to “pod save america” this afternoon, and it already looks like china and india are well on their way to exceeding their goals, and china’s on its way to becoming a global leader (bye bye US as a global leader). but that’s another post. meanwhile, 400 new coal jobs were added in may in the US. we’re nowhere near 2011 levels of coal employment, and i doubt we ever will be. laid off from a coal job? time to go back to school and learn a new trade. like solar panel installation and upkeep. and that’s also another post.

REMEMBER: this is the only earth we’ve got. if the earth goes to pot and is inhabitable for humans, WHAT ELSE MATTERS**? who cares about the economy, refugees, travel bans, and especially transgender people in bathrooms. GET IT TOGETHER, PEOPLE.

*do you NEED a post about the science behind climate change? i mean, there are a TON of peer-reviewed sciencey environmental studies out there you can look at. and 97% of scientists agree that it’s human-made. that’s the same effectiveness as a condom when used correctly. you take those chances, so why not these? (also, you’re making cleaner air and water and a better place to live – is that REALLY so bad, even if climate change isn’t human-made?)

**in all seriousness, the earth don’t care. we’ll get wiped out and the earth will live on for millions more years and not give two hoots about people. but i’m sure you care, at least for the next 50 years or so. #humansnowhereearthdontcare

Sources: wikipedia, wikipedia, and pod save america.

pale blue dot, earth dwellers

hello earth dwellers. happy meteorological spring. i know we can’t all live in the setting i do, surrounded by trees, happy frogs, and happy birds chirping into the night. but i want this to be here for us. for a while. i may only have another good 50-60 years, but people as a whole can sure be here for the long haul. and we can’t keep it up if the earth is shot.

i’ve said it once; i’ve said it 100 times: every day should be earth day. and with the president not signing the paris accord, now more than ever do we need to keep this mantra. (if you’re like me, you also want to know more about the paris accord, but that is a post for another day.)

keep your heads and hearts high, earth dwellers. we shall get past this. businesses are already embracing renewable energies and lower-emission natural gas because it’s cheaper. our recycling centers and composting areas will not disappear or be disbanded. it’s highly unlikely coal will make a comeback (another topic i’d like to discuss at a later date). our hunters, anglers, and outdoor enthusiasts are the country’s greatest supporters of environmental conservation efforts. know that if you support your state’s department of natural resources, you are likely rubbing elbows with your camouflaged neighbors. 

your efforts aren’t for naught, earth dwellers. your composting, gardening, recycling, minimalist lifestyling, and buying choices are making a difference (look at the surge in organic and less processed foods lately – all my anti-corn efforts!)

and keep it up, earth dwellers. just because some heads of state are denying the inevitable doesn’t mean YOU have to. you may not feel like you’re making a difference, but your contribution is what does make a difference. now more than ever, we need you, the earth needs you, every day. 

remeber, earth dwellers: every day is earth day.

this is a song about susan

e27444i’ve been an everclear fan since i heard them on the radio back in 1996-1997. i went to a concert at stcloud state back in probably 2000 during their “songs from an american movie” tour and then saw them when they played a free concert at the UofM maybe 10 years ago (i’m guessing art -the lead singer – was high. it was NOT a good concert). 

so, when i saw they were doing a 20th anniversary tour for the “so much for the afterglow” album, i called up my brother. two concerts, and i’d never been with the second-biggest everclear fan i know (i’m the first). he was hesitant at first; it’s not the original band – art is the only one who is original. but they were playing an old-school album all the way through for the tour, so he hesitantly said yes (besides – tickets were like $40 each for the third row. can’t really pass that up!). 

charlie and i met at our hotel in red wing then headed up to treasure island, where we had about an hour to kill and needed to eat, so we hit up the buffet. we had a great people-watching seat, ate our money’s worth, and i was eating two plates of pie when charlie decided to take a mini brain break in the bathroom. 

there i am, eating my two pies (blueberry and chocolate mint), when i look up and see art alexakis walking toward the VIP entrance from afar. i freeze, and my first thought is “omg it’s art and charlie’s in the stupid bathroom.” so i fumble for my phone, first to check if i could text him quick with no service, then wondering how on earth i’m going to take a picture surreptitiously without art seeing me. there was just no way because i’m sitting RIGHT THERE and he was getting closer and closer. AAAHHH. 

so i just look at him and and try to smile (it was probably more like a grimace), when he said “wow, that’s an old-school shirt*,” asked me how i was doing, and shook my hand. AHHHAHAAAA. i don’t know what etiquette is for asking celebrities for a picture while they’re heading to supper, so i didn’t even think about asking him for a pic. 

then charlie took another 10 minutes to get out of the bathroom while i was sitting there like OMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMG. 

he was mad for being in the bathroom. he wanted to go over and interrupt art during supper. i didn’t condone that and i was having no part of that but told cha could do what he wanted (he didn’t).

we headed in to find our seats – row 3 was a good choice! super close to the stage, and we were on the aisle, which was great. listened to a couple fastball songs, then headed out so charlie could have a break and i could get a couple beers. came back for a couple vertical horizon songs – got some video!

then everclear set up! IMG_2061

and then they came out on stage playing “so much for the afterglow” – omg it was great. they played side one of the album, then played some of their older songs – heartspark dollarsign, local god, heroin girl – and one of their newer songs, which i hadn’t heard. 

 (my favorite song!)

IMG_2060security was crazy mean. no excessive jumping around or trying to bumrush the stage. i seriously would’ve been ok with a dancing area. trying to jump around with your hands in the air is really annoying when you’re restricted to your chair area. charlie held up his lighter for about 5 seconds during a song, and THAT was a big no. good grief. what have concerts come to! (well, to be fair, we were at a casino, not a true concert venue.)

IMG_2063then they played side two of the album, and they said that once they finished, they’d do the whole leave stage, but really they’ll be back thing. the break they took was like, 15 seconds, so not even really a true encore. had a great old-school 80s guitar play-off, which led into a more rockish version of AM radio than the album had. after that, we heard wonderful, and they finished up the night with santa monica (yay!). 

they played for about two hours, which is pretty amazing. my ears were stuffed afterward and my voice hoarse from screaming lyrics at the guy’s head in front of me. i wish there had been more jumping and waving of arms in the air; toward the end i was like, who cares, and i threw my hands in the air all the time. that was the only thing missing – a mosh pit!

afterward, i asked charlie if he was ok with the other band members being new, and his tune had changed. as long as art was still the frontman and they were playing old songs, he was a-okay.

for the first concert i’ve been to in close to 10 years, this was a great experience!  

*this is all kind of funny because i was having a mini crisis beforehand about the shirt. should i wear it and be “that guy”? could i get away with it because it was from the original tour? i posited the question to facebook, and the consensus was that i should just get over it and wear the shirt. you do you, dude.

Review: The Handmaid’s Tale

The Handmaid's Tale
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

this is the first time i’ve read this book in more than 20 years. when i first read it, it seemed pretty impossible (well, to a young teenager, probably true). i’ve read a lot of post-apocalyptic YA. i mean, a LOT. and none have kept me up at night like this literary classic did. there was always the hope in the other books that something would make it right – fix the atrocities that were happening. but even the “historical notes” at the end of this didn’t make up for the societal idiocy that is gilead. and reading it? i could see it how something like that could happen in an “advanced” country.

View all my reviews

i’m a state worker. i belong to a union. contrary to popular belief, i do work a lot. that said, the republican-controlled state legislature decided to put language in the MN state agencies funding bill to cripple bargaining rights for wages and health insurance.

i’ve worked in private sector and now in a unionized environment. at my current job, i know i’m getting a fair, equal wage (you can actually go online and look me up – go ahead). my health bennies are pretty awesome. and guess what? i actually am a full union member. after seeing what happened at roch comm and tech after the new president came in and tried to clean house, i consider it a small price to pay for the knowledge that the union has my back if i’m ever unfairly let go.

and after five years, i’m actually pretty proud to work for the state of MN. and i’m proud to be a union member. now, if i were to go back to the private sector, i’m not going to cry about it; i work hard and i do good work, so i know that any job i hold is because i’m good at it. but after seeing 8 rounds of layoffs at my last private-sector job, i can easily say that i will take my union state job over that. 

i wrote to the governor to ask him to veto that bill. gov. dayton is a pretty pro-worker governor, so i’m fairly confident that it won’t pass. and after seeing five emails come through about this, i’m sure state workers all over are calling and emailing him to get rid of that bill. to all anti-union people, i get it. you think your employer does a fine job, and it’s probably so. but are you willing to quit when it’s not doing so fine? that’s what unions help with. i am still ambivalent about unions in general, but i’m glad i have one. 

ho there, garden

i got so much done this weekend; it was pretty unbelievable and bodes well for the upcoming summer of 3-day weekends. today i planted my tomatoes, peppers, and onions. the 10-day forecast looks frost-free, and after memorial day, it’s pretty much a done deal for planting. so in they went! still gotta plant some cukes, green beans, more basil, and my pie pumpkins. as for the other stuff i’ve planted, the only thing that’s come up so far is my peas, and that was weeks ago. not sure what’s going on!

anyway, that aside, today i spent some time tearing up the brush in the yard. O.M.G. what a complete mess. there is a vine of some sort that is crawling up the trees, and i spent a good part of the day tearing some down. nate and i took two truckloads of brush to the compost site. i still have to check out the vine to see if it’s actually harmful to the trees, but it definitely doesn’t look good, so i’ll take it down if i can. 

meanwhile, it’s been rainy and gross, but memorial day weekend is looking better and better, so maybe i’ll get out on my paddleboard again (yay!).

power

this past weekend i visiting melissa in her new house in rinkadink north dakota. traveling more south of fargo and little more west was a different experience; there are more hills, a little more softness to the landscape. it made me want to head a little more south and little more west and go to the black hills or head just west and go to mandan. 

when i visit melissa, i have conversations that i don’t have with anyone else, save for something similar with my brother on the philosophical level. one thing we talked about, which i’d never really considered before (and probably should have) is the idea of women being more powerful than men. i’ve thought about that over the past couple days. 

the gist of it: men don’t want to control and conquer what is already weaker than them. now i’m not sure i 100% can get behind this idea; i think men wan to control and conquer what threatens them as well as what is more powerful than them. but i am open to the idea that women are more powerful than men.

but what is that power? if it is what i think it is, sexuality, therein lies a problem. why is sexuality such a means of power for men? why is the mere presence of a woman, or being alone with any women a la mike pence, such a hard thing (heh) for men to deal with? why did paul/augustine/other church dudes hold women in such disregard? 

if being in the same space as a woman brings on sexual thoughts that a man can’t control, that’s the dude’s fault, not the woman’s. and thinking about a woman in an impure context is going to bring about eternal damnation, right?

so, because men can’t control their sexual thoughts, then perhaps the next best thing is to control the thing that is causing such angst in the moral life. lovely.

what is the real problem here? maybe it’s time to take a look at why a species that is, at its core, sexual, promiscuous, and polygamous, holds beliefs that having sexual thoughts, a completely natural human thing, is bad. 

on an aside, i was listening to a ted radio hour on mpr today and heard a portion of this guy’s ted talk. now i’m going to read his book!

update update

well hi there! long time, no see. 

i ran another half marathon with liz, and i think our downfall was not remember to take some ibuprofin beforehand. we were not happy people crossing that finish line. also, liz was not ready as far as prepping, and she was mid-cold. lots of things working against us this year!

garden has been straightened out and some plantings are in. i’m trying some soap and bone meal to keep away the deer – we’ll see if it works. i’ve got asparagus planted, lettuce, broccoli, carrots, spinach, peas, and kolrabi. gotta wait a couple weeks for the tomatoes and peppers! it might get chilly at night for a couple more weeks! 

also, i <3 spring! i’m amazed at what’s popping up in the flowerbeds at my house. 

this blog thing is really waning and i’m sorry 🙁 gotta get in the habit of doing it, i guess!

flip phone update

i think my regression experiment is over. my awesome motorola razr is unable to find a signal.

which is ok, i guess. i’m going to continue to work on leaving my phone in another room and also looking at the internet less (it doesn’t do much when i look at my laptop instead of my phone).

i’m a much less angry person now than i was when i started this project. that’s probably a result of a few things:

  1. i’ve curated my facebook and twitter feeds to be less news and more other stuff i’m interested in: books, cats, yoga, running, gardens, weird facts, etc.
  2. i’ve been trying to let the news roll off my back. i’m not ignoring it, but i’m not actively dwelling on it, for the most part. i’ve been trying to do something positive to counteract the negative. DT defunds conservation efforts? well, i guess i’m donating more money to the minnesota dnr. (on a related note, i feel like this is what republicans would prefer – private donations to causes – but i don’t foresee my taxes going down to counter my donations. grr.)
  3. i’ve been trying to be more meditative. i subscribed to headspace for a while and learned how to move anxiety out. also, yoga definitely helps. 

back to my iphone 5 for now. having emojis back will be nice! also being able to see people’s pictures they send via text message. i am going to try to keep the apps to a minimum like i currently have. 

if it comes to a point where i start getting ragey again, it might be time to deactivate some social accounts.

goodbye, razr. if everyone still used flip phones, i’d definitely get you fixed. i’m kind of sad my experiment fizzled out, but i’m impressed it lasted for four months or so…

tomorrow: a running update.

wow

i don’t think i’ve gone this long without blogging since i started my blog. has my creative blogging mantra run out? am i just burnt out on writing? do i just want to lie on the couch and do nothing when i get home?

(it’s #3.)

so i have a piece of dirt churned up and ready for a garden. i even bought a deer fence to keep out those pesky animals. 

i ran another half marathon, which SUUU-UCKED this year for some reason. although i feel a lot better the day after for some reason. added about 20 minutes onto the overall time from last year. BUT the course was really nice and the swag was nice. AND there was food and drink at the end. 

i think my max mileage is 8 miles though. i really don’t want to do another half marathon because at 8 miles of running, i just feel like my life has gone wrong somehow. then around mile 10 i just step into a “well, this is my life now” attitude and run as slowly as possible until the end. so i guess this summer i’m going to be working on speed versus distance. i don’t have a fancy 10-minute-mile goal like liz, but if i can get under 12 pretty regularly, i’ll be happy. 

work has been significantly less stressful, which is really nice. after commencement, it’ll calm down even more, and i’ll almost be zenned out at work. for reference, we had two major projects in the past 6 months (eorientation creation and a complete website migration), my coworker quit, leaving me as a department of one, and i haven’t even been there a year yet :/ we hired me a coworker though, and the two projects are done. maybe i’ll be able to finally get down to some of the work i was actually hired to do! now i have to decide if i’m going to work 4 10-hour days this summer so i have 3-day weekends. hmmmm!! also, with my overtime, i think i’m going to buy a paddleboard!!! WOO.

on an unrelated note, sometimes i hear loons from my backyard. <3

adirondackloons