Only One Planet

Since childhood, I inherited the trait of packratism.  Stuff has accumulated in the form of collections.  I have plenty of collections, some are nifty and others make me wonder what I was thinking at the time I started the collection.

My childhood archive collections often overflowed onto every flat surface in my bedroom, including the floor.  My brother, had the same tendency to collect stuff.  We shared the same bedroom.  You can probably imagine what our room looked like.

When the stuff became way out of hand, mom let us know.  She had a pet statement that was used when she couldn’t cope with our clutter anymore.  “Your room looks like a Federal disaster area!”  Mark and I knew that she would soon follow up the disaster declaration with a threat.  Something like, “You boys won’t get any dinner until you put this room in order.”

I don’t know if mom would ever make good on her threat.  We didn’t want to really find out, so Mark and I put our stuff away and organized our shelves.  For good measure, we generally dusted and vacuumed afterwards.

I wish mom was still around to notice all the clutter and mess we’re in.  Not just the stuff in my little house, but what us humans are doing to our planetary home.  She’d likely not just say that earth looks like a Federal disaster area, she’d quip that our world looks like a global disaster area.  Mom would certainly be correct.  She won’t even need to threaten us with going to bed without supper, either.  If we keep doing what we’ve always been doing, we’ll all be going without meals whether we want to or not.

We haven’t been treating our Mother very well.  Mother Nature, that is.  As the old Imperial oleomargarine commercials used to say, “It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature.”  We can’t soothe our mother by spreading margarine onto a cracker like the commercial.  We are being told, in no uncertain terms, that we’ve got to put our home in order.


There’s a slogan going around the web lately.  I don’t know who is the original author, but I like it.  The slogan is:  “Act as if we have only one planet.”  The simple truth is, that we do only have this one place in the entire universe that we can realistically depend upon.

Science fiction fantasy has presented moon bases or Mars settlements as options for colonization by us earthlings.  Good luck on that.

The moon is an average 384,403 kilometres or 238, 857 miles from earth.  If you travel via space capsule, it takes around four days to arrive.  You’ll need to pack everything you need, I stress everything, because you won’t have any food, potable water, or air once you get to the moon.

How about Mars?  Well, at its closest point, Mars is 55,651,000 kilometres or 34,580,000 miles away from us.  If you time your journey so as to coordinate the pathway with the closest our planets are to one another, at best will be a one way trip of 214 days.

Can you imagine spending the major part of an entire year cooped up in a tiny space capsule?  Would you even want to spend four days cooped up on a trip to the moon?  I didn’t really look forward being shut up in an airplane for the several hours it took to fly from Nebraska to Asia.  Can we build enough space ships to take us all away to the moon or to Mars?  How will we live once we arrive?

Maybe beings from another solar system will rescue us?  Well, in Hollywood movies or our fantasies, perhaps.  Even if superior beings from planet Woo Woo come to “save” us, I don’t think I want to be around for that.  Think about the fate of the Amerindians and Australian aborigines when so-called “superior” European adventurers arrived to save them.

No, I think we must ultimately save ourselves.  There are no aliens to clean up our world.  We can’t go on trying to fool Mother Nature.  She hasn’t been fooled at all.  We really do need to act as if we have only one planet on which to live.


The Blue Jay of Happiness knows that the job ahead will go more smoothly and efficiently when we all pitch in to make our home planet healthy again.

About swabby429

An eclectic guy who likes to observe the world around him and comment about those observations.
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