T: Hey J, did you know “llamba growing” is an anagram for “global warming”?
J: That doesn’t make any sense. What’s a llamba?
T: I’d tell you, but it would offend the Twitter-verse.
J: Why would that stop you?
T: You are right; the Twitter-verse is to being offended what Beeker is to nervous lab assistants.
J: Got one for climate change?
T: Um ….
How about “tea chime clang”?
J: That sounds like a rap group I’m about to characterize with a wildly racist stereotype.
T: I dare you.
J: No way. I get enough GOP junk mail as it is.
T: That wasn’t racist.
J: No, but it was sort of partisan … Partisanist? Partist? Sanist?
J: Sanist is the other part of … never mind. What do you want?
T: Just catching up … how’s the weather up there in Connecticut?
J: It’s 60 and sunny. We are thinking about planting a banana tree.
T: In Connecticut?
J: This global warming stuff is getting out of hand.
T: Come to think of it, Grillmates just came out with a line of sun screen.
J: Lady Gaga’s meat suit is now medium-well.
T: I can see snow out my window, so we are at least a little pink in the middle, still.
Wait, Lady Gaga’s meat suit? How long ago was that?
J: I dunno … ten years?
T: That suit would be ripe enough to gag a maggot by now.
J: How long did you have that locked and loaded?
T: I dunno … ten years?
J: I think I heard it the first time from my grandfather when he was changing my diapers.
T: Are you still …
J: Stop it.
T: It’s a good thing Gaga passed that meat suit through her body first, or it would really stink by now.
J: A poop joke? We are roasting on our own spit up here, and you are making poop jokes?
T: Hey, at least you’ll cook evenly.
J: Seriously, though, the weather has been pretty warm here lately.
T: We’ve been fairly mild too, at least the last couple of years. I think over time our seasons have moved a little bit forward, too. We seem to get spring a little later, and fall lasts a little bit longer every year compared to what I remember from when we were kids.
J: Well, that’s global warming for ya… it’s subtle, but it’s there. Like the notes you don’t play in jazz.
T: I’m not sure that qualifies as global warming. Global repositioning? I dunno.
J: Global forwarding? Global call forwarding? Global your pleasure, Global your fun?
T: “Doc, all this heat is making me dizzy and I have global vision.”
J: George Global-U Bush.
T: Nope. Doesn’t work.
J: Worth a try.
T: Yaknow, I don’t think global warming is all that well understood, at least by the masses. Political causes use it like a football so much that it’s almost impossible to get a good grasp on what the term actually means.
J: People tend to confuse climate with weather. Weather is what you see when you look out the window; climate is the big picture. People look out the window and see that their weather is pretty much the same as it ever was, so they tend to think climate change is a hoax.
T: Yep. Plus Climate Change and Global Warming aren’t the same thing, but they are bandied about together so much that the public thinks they are.
J: That’s true too. Global warming is just the number by which the Earth is warming. Climate change is the effect that number has on Mother Nature’s big muscles, the ice caps, the oceans and the forests.
T: To me, Global Warming is the lead singer of the Climate Change band. Here’s the band:
- Global Warming, playing the greenhouse effect. And sometimes the tambourine.
- Deforestation, playing the cow farms replacing the Amazon rain forest and other temperate climate forests that keep the land masses from becoming deserts.
- Resource depletion, playing the oil derricks, coal mines and occasionally the spoons.
- Overfishing the oceans, playing the fishing nets that comprise 90 percent of the Great Pacific Ocean Garbage Island.
Global Warming interacts with the others, especially with deforestation. Forests regulate temperature patterns along with rainfall patterns.
J: All of those things play into climate change. It’s not as simple as just cars or cow farts, although both of those play a role, maybe the bass fiddle or the keytar.
T: I think a lot of people use the term Global Warming when they really mean Climate Change, and vice versa.
I’m not sure which is more disingenuous. Using Climate Change when you mean Global Warming dismisses the effects of deforestation, overfishing and resource depletion. Using Global Warming when you mean Climate Change gives deniers an excuse to scream bullshit, because they can’t tell weather from climate.
And it works, because the people who need to be convinced can’t tell, either.
J: It’s not helpful that there seem to be a lot of deniers in the government at the moment. Their mantra seems to be “drill, baby, drill” despite the strong scientific evidence that CO2 emissions are the lead guitar and backing vocals of the Climate Change Band. And no, I’m not gonna let go of that analogy. I like it.
T: The Climate Change band album:
- “Rock my World” (with an actual rock)
- “Love me Tender” (but stop eating cows)
- “Joy to the World” (Jeremiah was an extinct bullfrog)
- “Stairway to Heaven” (made out of fishing nets and discarded fracking equipment)
- Inna Godda Davida (I got nothin’, that’s just the phonetic spelling of Iron Butterfly’s drunk-assed lead singer trying to say “In the Garden of Eden”)
OK, it’s an EP. Sue me, I got bored.
J: I won’t sue you, but the Iron Butterfly guy might.
T: By the way, you used climate change for global warming again. I’m going to start charging you a quarter every time you do that. I need a jar…
J: A jar for one quarter? Optimistic, aren’t you?
T: That’s one hell of a superhero nickname, isn’t it? I’m “The Iron Butterfly Guy! AWAY!” (tries to fly, falls into the drum set)
J: Anyway, what are we going to do about it? People ain’t gonna stop eating cows, and they ain’t gonna quit driving cars. So what do we do? Give cows Gas-X?
T: I think Global Warming is the least worrisome of the four horsemen of the Climate Change apocalypse.
J: Jeez, mix metaphors much?
T: It’s the Ringo in the Climate Change band. Satisfied?
J: I am, but now Ringo’s getting a lawyer.
T: Smart people have learned how to fix carbon, and other smart people have learned how to turn old plastic bags into fuel. It’s early in the process, but the Wright Brothers didn’t start out with a 747.
J: Good point, Batman.
T: Thank you, Alfred. Sunpower is the long term solution, I think. We only use about two percent of the sun’s ambient power potential. We’ve made massive strides recently, and we’ll make more.
Wind power, I suspect, is the eight-track tape of the new energy paradigm, but it has led to some nice innovations. One is that battery storage can bridge the gap between oil- and coal-based electricity and sun power. Maybe wind is the cassette tape to sun power’s MP3 of the future.
J: What’s the CD?
T: It’s a disc they use to … oh, you mean metaphorically?
J: If it’s not too much trouble.
T: Lemme think about it.
J: The huge (glowing) elephant in the room is nuclear power, if we could just eliminate the regulatory issues. The next generation of nuke plants are far more efficient than current ones.
Germany gets something like 80 percent of its electricity from nukes. It could be done here, too, but people still hear “nukes” and think “Three Mile Island”, even though that was really no biggie, radiation-wise. Chernobyl was WAY worse, but that was a reactor design that was archaic in the 1980s and would never even be considered today.
T: Nuclear power might be the CD in the metaphorical alternative fuel soup.
J: That’s a lot of adjectives for a soup nobody will ever order.
T: I’m sure Sarah Sanders has had a bowl or two.
J: Saliva is not an alternative fuel.
T: Or metaphorical.
J: So how is it the CD (nuclear power, not saliva)? Impress us with your amazing logic, Batman. If that is your metaphorical name.
T: Well, the public issue with nuclear power is the fear of a blowup. I don’t know what the blowup chances are, but it’s like anything else that would be catastrophic if it ever happened. One blowup is too many.
The primary concern, as I see it, is that nuclear power generates so much toxic waste that, in comparison, the ocean garbage island looks like a flower pot.
And nuclear waste isn’t just dangerously toxic to humans. It’s literally the earth’s juice being wasted. How much nuclear power can we get from the earth before we are right back to dangerously depleting its resources?
Like the CD, we’ve made nuclear power largely obsolete by harnessing wind and the sun. We don’t need nuclear CDs in an MP3 world of wind and sun power.
J: I don’t think there’s any one “right” answer; I think solar, wind, hydroelectric and nuclear all have their places in the future.
The biggest thing we need to do is get away from burning fossil fuels, for power generation and (especially) in our cars. Electric cars are the wave of the future; we should do more to encourage people to buy them and, equally importantly, encourage car makers to build them. There used to be a tax credit for buyers of electric cars; that should be reinstated, and there should be some form of subsidy for manufacturers.
Ironically, steam-powered vehicles were just about to overcome their major tech hurdles when they were swamped by the Model T. They had problems with boilers either not lighting or exploding, but Stanley had ironed those bugs out. Unfortunately, they – along with most other early automakers – got crushed under Henry Ford’s wheels.
T: The best way to get electric cars into the mainstream is to make electric cars that the public will want to buy. We need electric sports cars, big ole electric trucks and white electric panel vans for pedophiles.
OK, maybe not the last one.
J: Tesla is already building electric sports cars; electric semis are on the horizon, but still a couple years from mass production. As far as electric pedophile vans go, I wouldn’t know. Hopefully, they’ll have the capability to connect the battery directly to the driver’s testicles.