Monday, July 06, 2009

We're Doomed

The distance from where we left the car in the parking lot was almost as far as the distance we drove to the restaurant, but we’d never considered walking since to do so would have marked us as weirdoes or losers and besides, who wants to be outside without air conditioning when it’s already 90 degrees by 10 in the morning and even though I’m exaggerating a bit, it’s obvious that there are many places on earth—Albuquerque, New Mexico being one—that couldn’t possibly exist, at least in their present form, without plentiful cheap petroleum and big cars filled up with it.

I fear mightily for my country and the way of life that many of my fellow citizens enjoy, a way of life that I can pretend isn’t so prevalent in my little green corner of America in the Pacific Northwest, a way of life that depends completely, as far as I can tell, on a resource that’s got what, 10, 15 years left?

What’s going to happen to these giant four-lane in either direction highways with shopping malls on both sides of the road when there’s no gas left? Who’s going to buy those hundreds of cars in the massive auto dealerships that line the roadways? How are people going to get across a town that’s got to be 25 miles from end-to-end and where are they going to put their Starbucks coffee when there’s no cup holder to put it in?

And the sad thing is, unlike most of the time, when I get to pretend access to the moral high ground as I bicycle commute everywhere, here I am, in my Chevrolet HHG, driving three blocks to breakfast, knowing that if I lived here, I’d get totally used to it and would think nothing of filling up and cruising around everywhere without any worries that this way of life wouldn’t continue forever even though it’s obvious it can’t last and we’re doomed.


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