Tuesday, May 01, 2012
SQUIRRELY SPRING SPRUNG
Remember that limerick we used to sniggle conspiratorially about in our youth because of that forbidden 'bad' word that we dare not say aloud -- at least if any adults nearby? Those were the years long before George Carlin and his seven dirty words made this verbiage quite tame by comparison.
Spring has sprung,
Fall has fell,
and it's colder than ..... 'last year' (we would giggle and say)
And then, for English grammar rule lovers was this enlightened tidbit:
We conjugate swim ..... swim, swam, swum
Now conjugate dim .....
Back to the topic of weather -----
"Soupy marine layer" is what TV's weatherman forecast for this coming morning -- again. I don't mind since we have an over-abundance of sun days most of the year. Six weeks ago I was delighted to observe what I thought was one of the first signs a California spring had arrived.
I was about to exit my parked car at the retirement community where I provide some health care rehabilitation services. Suddenly, movement under the green leaf-filled umbrella-like tree next to the walkway caught my eye. There they were -- tumbling around, flitting here and there in short jerky movements as they ran a few steps, stopped abruptly, frozen in place, surveying their surroundings, probably for any signs of predators. Then, with a flick and swish of their bushy red tails, as though they were mechanical toys winding themselves up, they resumed their antics.
Transfixed, I soon concluded what I was observing was a courting dance. The same slightly larger squirrel was making mounting advances on the smaller one who would repeatedly simply sit down each time the pursuer made his critical move. He would then temporarily scurry aside, but soon return to repeat the flirtatious process. Each time the object of his attention would quickly sit down thwarting his efforts for a more intimate relationship. Aha, I thought! I have just witnessed the practice of squirrely world birth control.
I wonder if the squirrels were as misled as I was that spring had actually arrived. Since that time my weather prognostication on seasons of the year has been turned upside down. Our weather has seemed bizarrely unusual in keeping with climate changes continuing to be in evidence all over the world. Southern California, where I live, can definitely attest to our weather becoming much more erratic in recent years with this one no exception.
My Christmas cactus has really been traumatized. The hearty green plant has adapted in a strangely unique way. The bright fuchsia red blooms have blossomed in staggered sequence each time on a different portion of the plant on three different occasions since the beginning of the year. This week, one lone blossom has emerged in what must be a final fourth attempt to synchronize with nature.
I am of the persuasion that the world macro weather picture can be attributed primarily to two different causes for climate change. Scientists have said our earth is slightly tipping on its axis which accounts for some of the changes we're experiencing. Scientists have also determined man-made pollution in the atmosphere is contributing to climate changes. This laypersons opinion is that there is no simple black and white, either/or, one or the other explanation. Both events are at play.
I become annoyed with all the time, energy and words spent arguing over which cause is responsible. Why can't we all just acknowledge the scientific facts indicating both contribute? Why not recognize the axis tipping which we know is beyond our control? Why not devote ourselves to addressing those pollution factors over which we have control? Why don't we concentrate on making accommodations to these changes with a goal of human adaptation so we can survive on this earth?
Meanwhile, we better be checking for another planet to which a select few of our species can migrate, just in case we fail to preserve life as we know it on Earth. Perhaps, that's how Earth became populated in the first place. Species on another planet had to leave, came to earth and here we are. I don't find this earth-settling scenario incompatible with various religions beliefs. Perhaps we'll eventually have to leave our planet. Perhaps this is our history which we're doomed to repeat if we don't learn from past lessons.