Sunday, June 13, 2010

Word of the day: Vuvuzela

I'm never sure what is supposed to go in this space. Sometimes I have a coherent thought that spews out onto the page rather easily. Sometimes the page is left open for hours until I can string together 500 words that make both grammatical and logical sense. It ain't always easy, gang. Today, I think I'll just spew at random, if you please.
The oil is still gushing out of that pipe in the Gulf of Mexico. You've seen it, right? The incredible thing to me is that the oil has enough built-up pressure to continue to leak out of the pipe without being pumped. That's amazing to me. It would have been great if they could just turn off a pump, but the earth is spitting it out at a pretty nice pace. I'd think that the earth would be interested in keeping it in, since it's a form of slow suicide. It is barely being collected faster than it is coming out, and it will be until Tuesday before another effort is made to stop it. The mind boggles at what effect over 100 million gallons of oil (10 times the Exxon-Valdez spill) can have in a confined and sensitive space like the Gulf. I think there are things we aren't being told because there is something environmentally devastating going on down there.

SALT LAKE CITY – Emergency workers believe they have stopped a 21,000-gallon oil leak from reaching the environmentally sensitive Great Salt Lake, one of the West's most important inland water bodies for migratory birds that use it as a place to rest, eat and breed.
But the spill has taken a toll on wildlife at area creeks and ponds, coating about 300 birds with oil and possibly threatening an endangered fish.
The leak began Friday night when an underground Chevron Corp. pipeline in the mountains near the University of Utah broke. The breach sent oil into a creek that flows through neighborhoods, into a popular Salt Lake City park, and ultimately into the Jordan River, which flows into the Great Salt Lake.
Let that be a lesson. If you're going to dump 21,000 gallons of oil into a lake, do it when 100,000,000 gallons are being dumped into the Gulf of Mexico. That's called a diversion tactic, folks.
Meanwhile...
Some great (and near-great) events are heavily tied-into alcohol consumption. Often, I wonder how popular some things would be if we couldn't tote alcohol in or consume it legally in public. We are, of course, encouraged to "drink responsibly," but if we stopped to think about it for a minute (and we will) ones responsibility is the first thing to go when we start drinking, so being responsible would be deemed impossible after a couple of drinks.
One such event is this World Cup soccer tournament that is going on somewhere in the world. People around the world love soccer, but here in America it is hard to embrace sitting through 3 hours of a sporting event to have it end in a tie. I can't conjure up any emotion over almost losing. And the noise. There's something about golf, tennis and baseball that is both competitive and tranquil. People don't spend the entire time screaming in your ear or blowing horns. ALERT: Word of the day. I'd guess that companies who make vuvuzela's (Vuvuzela's R Us, Vuzuvela Depot, Vuvuzela Hut - they're out there) see their business skyrocket every couple of years, then lay off their entire staff because, well - how many vuvuzelas does the world need? I'm guessing there's a tie-in between the vuvuzelas and alcohol.
And now, a few sobering words from U.S. Representative Jim Matheson, (D-UTAH) on Chevron's response to the oil spill in Utah:
"I would say they are responding very aggressively to it. I think they know there is a heightened concern among people in this country about oil spills," Matheson said. "I think they understand it's in their best interest to do everything they can to fix this as soon as possible."
Really? Do they? What are the consequences of not cleaning it up as soon as possible? Would we stop using their product? Sure, like that'll happen. And yes, we are concerned (even heightened concern) about oil spills. I'm not sure there ever has not been. I can't wait until "Oil Spill Awareness Day" so that we can all be reminded of the consequences of dumping a toxic chemical on animals, onto beaches and into our water supply.
I forgot.

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