I usually like to post about hero goats who have been valiantly eating underbrush and growth to prevent wildfires. The science is clear that the increase in prevalence and intensity of wildfires in the western United States and in Australia are caused by the climate crisis and general warming of the planet. However, the climate crisis effects different regions in different ways. For example, over the summer the southeastern United States suffered a terrible drought. What does this have to do with goats? Our friend Otis from The Haven Zoo has been dealing with a zinc deficiency due to over-dried, nutrient lacking hay caused by the drought. For Otis, this means that he has lost some of his hair and has to see a veterinarian regularly to care for his skin. Sometimes it’s easy to think that the climate crisis only effects far away corners of the planet, but the same mechanisms that are causing the horrific wildfires are causing problems everywhere. I still believe that with the right collective energy, humanity and its animal friends can mitigate some of the worst effects. Small changes to your lifestyle can make a big impact, as well as supporting policy-makers committed to a greener future.
If you have read the news over the first week of the new decade, you may be feeling overwhelmed and potentially isolated. The headlines are dramatic and somewhat bleak; however, take hope. One of the reasons our species evolved to build cathedrals, send humans to the moon and eradicate deadly diseases is we came together to solve problems and create amazing things. Truly evolved humans don’t go it alone – if we act now we can make a better world for each other and the future.
Once upon a time there was a famous general who shared her wisdom with a friend. She said “take your broken heart and make it into art.” From any heartache or setback, there is always hope that things will get better. Make amazing things and practice radical kindness and you never know you might just change the world.
Instead of getting in your car, go for a walk. It’s better for the planet and for your body. Plus you never know what wonderful things you might encounter along the way.
Less driving more living!
Today is May Day, or International Workers’ Day. Interestingly, May Day originated in Chicago, Illinois, where demonstrators organised in May of 1886 after a two year effort to rally support for enforcement of eight hour work days. The Haymarket Meeting was put to an end by over zealous police officers who stormed the otherwise peaceful meeting demanding more equitable and safer working conditions. Eight men were arrested for involvement with the riot, although some of them were not even at the event, four were executed, three eventually pardoned, and one died mysteriously in a jail cell from the impact of a dynamite explosion. Needless to say, in 1889, at an international meeting for labor in Paris, May Day was designated as International Workers Day in honor of those who were lost in the fight for an eight hour working day. Although, not really celebrated in the United States anymore, May Day maintains international significance, and is widely a day of celebration and/or protest to continue the fight for better working conditions across the globe.
So, thank you to the brave men and women who stood up for the eight hour working day a century ago.
Happy International Workers Day everyone, may you be fairly compensated for your labor!
Desire paths are those trodden, foot created trails you sometimes see across open spaces representing places that lack a proper paved sidewalk or footpath that people (and or goats) use to make their journeys more efficient. Perhaps they signal a certain yearning to rebel against the modern world, forge your own path and thumb your nose at the algorithms of urban planning. On one hand, they are a form of active resistance, dividing planted grassy knolls and designated open spaces, but on the other, they are literally perhaps the “path of least resistance” making traveling across these spaces perhaps easier and less time consuming. Desire paths are the physical manifestation of one of the paradoxes of being human – a longing to be your own, individual person, guided by your own desires, intuition and knowledge that is better than anyone else’s for your experience; however, longing to belong and fit in with others, to experience the stages of life in their proper order and to share your life’s path with others. Perhaps there is no real solution other than finding balance between our yearning for individuality and belonging, and maybe updated urban planning algorithms.
What is your desire path?
The look in this goat’s eye tells me that the rope around his neck tied to a log, accompanied by bells, will be useless when he or she decides it is time to blow this pop-stand. I hope that whatever you find yourself tied to that the escape is easy when it is time for you to move on or have some weekend shenanigans.
Your borders are no match for a free spirit.