Saturday, May 3, 2008

The Future of the Planet

Sarah placed both her hands on the door to the garage and gave a mighty shove. She grunted with exertion but it only budged an inch. She leaned on it with her shoulder and managed to open it another two inches. She reached down, grabbed the empty plastic bottle at her feet and and shoved it into the garage with a satisfying crunch. She knew it was meaningless, but she still got satisfaction out of separating the plastics for recycling. Even though the recycling pick-ups had stopped two years earlier, she couldn't kick the recycling habit. Throwing away the plastic bottles just felt so wrong, as if she were just giving up and accepting what the newscasters were clamoring about. She still couldn't come to terms with the fact that all the environmental measures she and millions of others around the world had adopted hadn't made an impact. The expensive light bulbs, the complicated recycling, the car pooling: all had been for nothing. Those products were part of a massive PR cover-up by Corporate America to keep us busy while they poisoned the earth to keep investors happy with growing profits. Didn't they realize that they were hurting themselves? Now the damage was irreversible.

Temperatures had recently gone as high as 112 degrees Farenheit in the shade in Maine in April. People had become like vampires, only venturing out after dusk for fear of vicious cancer-causing ultraviolet rays. Sarah felt like a prisoner during the day, trapped in her warm suburban home. Even at night, when the deadly sun was not an issue, the exorbitant cost of gas made every trip a luxury. Things had gotten bad so quickly, it was hard to believe the reports of worse to come.

Sarah shut the door with a sad little click. She sat back down in front of her solar powered computer screen and flicked a switch to turn it on. She was eager to get the latest scoop on Britney Spear's botched face lift.

This post was inspired by the Sunday Scribblings prompt: The future of the planet.

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