The weather outside is frightful... but please spare me any fire this holiday season. New England weather has always been known to be head-scratchingly odd... but this is just, well, weird. Weirder than usual, even. It's maybe the weirdest winter I've ever witnessed.
A remarkable thing happened just before the holidays. My father, who's always been much more moderate than I am, finally became Mr. Green. I remember talking with him about Katrina, just after it hit, saying "see what Global Warming is doing to us?" He just said it could have been coincidence. After all, it wasn't the first Cat5 hurricane that's hit America. Well, Dad... there was also the first hurricane to truly hit Brazil that year too.
Amazingly, I think it was Al Gore's movie that finally did it for him. My dad, who rarely goes to see movies, decided to go and see what Al Gore had to say. He's an open-minded kind of guy and - to be honest - that's probably why he had so much trouble believing Global Warming was as bad as most scientists were saying it was to begin with. There were some people (albeit rarely scientists) who didn't think Global Warming was a big deal, so he figured 'it had to be something in the middle.'
Well, he saw the Gore's movie and came out a changed man. Now he feels really guilty about owning a Suburban - even though he only drives it to school (which is at the most 2 minutes away). His new dream car has shifted from being some pimped out, huge Beamer to an earth-friendly hybrid. Who knows if we'll be able to reverse Global Warming or not, but the fact that a guy like my Dad can change so quickly, mainly by a great documentary. I truly do have hope. We have not lost the Earth yet and we may not lose it after all.
In fact, Dad's never seen a winter like this one. That's saying a lot: soon to be 57, he's seen a lot of winters. But this one is different. This one has solidified his belief of Global Warming. We've had almost no snow. I could have worn shorts today and I would have only been mildly chilly. In fact, I saw squirrels scurrying about my backyard's fence. Aren't they supposed to be hibernating with dozens of acorns in their mouth? I even heard on the news that some flowers were starting to bloom. If my Dad still had a garden, he'd surely be freaked out.
We - as normal, rational people - need to continue to try to change one mind at a time. We need to get our skeptic friends to see Al Gore's movie. Heck, we should just get the guy to run for President again. Despite the mild winter, I still have hope we'll have a White Christmas soon enough.