Dear Reader,

Let’s get one thing clear right from the start: I am not an expert about our planet, our bodies, our minds or our communities.

I am not a dedicated and knowledgeable environmentalist; suffice is to say that when it comes to my use of reusable grocery bags or the recycling of periodicals and shopping bags, compliance is not 100%. I enjoy excellent health due entirely to a fortunate gene inheritance thus far unmarred by the consumption of copious amounts of mayonnaise. While I am acquainted with buzzwords like "farmed" versus "wild" seafood, I am unable to recall which is better for the planet or for our health; and I’m still not eating veal because of something I heard in 1989. I am not even remotely up to date on all the facts about the huge host of issues that comprise environmentally "doing the right thing." Is anyone? Before you can do the right thing, you need to sort out what the right thing is.

In other words, I’m just like the vast majority of ignorant slobs out there with a basic passing knowledge of the headlines, soundbites and issues relating to environmental conscientiousness … and barely a clue as to what it all means, or what to do about it. With all the pressing matters of the day on a household and global basis, it’s a lot easier to proceed as if none of these things really matters in any important way that should impact my life and activities, especially if the impact is inconvenient.

But, friends, this uneasy feeling I’ve had for years is getting stronger and stronger, because all these little and big things really do matter, and it appears that no one is going to figure this out for me. We vote for our leaders only once a year or so. We "vote" many times each day with our choices and habits and purchases. All of these hundreds of daily acts decide the future for our children and our children’s children. Not to mention the future of all those polar bears swimming and swimming, looking for some ice to sit on … which has to be the most painful thought to contemplate. Ever.

It’s time for me to stop letting all this stuff go in one ear and out the other. It’s time to pay attention. I am not an expert, but I am a seeker, starting today. Just one person, trying to open my eyes.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my journal. Hopefully something here may help you to open your eyes as well. I welcome your comments. As you will see, in this quest I will need all the help I can get.

Robin Whitney

Park City, Utah

January 1, 2012

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