Sunday, March 11, 2007

Sprocket's Thinking Spot

In this space, we'll pull together a smattering of all things pertinent that we think Sprocket would want you to know. Fortunately, we think he has just short enough of an attention span to have lots of interesting things to tell you. Let's find out, shall we?


We've found a pretty special new organization run by an old friend of ours from our days at Audubon magazine. He's started a climate change movement called Step It Up 2007, which encourages everyone to weigh in on climate change by means of a live petition. You show up at an event or create an event that gathers in the name of asking Congress to reduce emissions by 80% in 2050, gather all your peeps in front of a "Step It Up 2007" banner, and send a photo into the good folks at Step It Up. National Step It Up day is April 14th.

ARFE is an organization that's restricted from lobbying, unfortunately, but we'll be asking some select people we know who are running events that day to Step It Up for us.

Here in Chicago we're planning on attending a festival that falls, fortuitously, on Earth Day. April 21 and 22, we'll be in the enormous McCormick Convention Center, learning a lot about being green by attention the annual Green Festival. We're very excited to see what we learn.

Food and Drink
We drink a fair amount of wine with beer here in the ARFE household, and we like to have people over--so we try to introduce ourselves, and our guests, to new options. One area that we haven't done much exploring in is organic beer and wine. We've heard great things: organic wine has less sulfur in it, for instance--but we haven't actually found anything we really really like. That might change: We got a hot tip that there's an organic wine out there that we might really like. It's from Provence. We like Provence, land of lavender and kindly monks, so we'll try this bottle next and keep you posted.

If that fails, we always have the Family Farmed expo to fall back on: it's a collection of local farmers, and they're hosting an organic food and wine tasting at the historic Chicago Cultural Center. Maybe we'll find something good there. Or maybe one of us will get stuck ogling something completely unrelated to organic, like pictures of the great architecutre here in Chicago. We're not saying who that someone might be.

Just in time for Step It Up, the European Union has called on select nations (ahem, China, us, and India) to meet the EU's challenge of reducing greenhouse emissions by 30% from 1990 levels by the year 2020. If the "rest of the world" doesn't sign on, says the EU, those nice Europeans will still commit to reducing their emissions by 20% by the year 2020. Step It Up, and let's follow suit, yes?

And now for something completely different: PETA has sent a missive to Al Gore insisting on a vegetarian diet for him. We understand that the big hubbub over his actual carbon footprint may have ruffled a few feathers, but everyone understands that you have a slay a few chickens in order to make a fine chicken soup....

Oh, whoops, did we just say that? ....

Stay tuned for next week's installment. There's never a shortage of things to tell you!

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