July 26th, 2010

Can cycling curb global warming?

Saying cycling is good for the planet is rather like saying sex is good for your heart. To make either claim, would be to miss the whole point. We ride bikes and have sex, because both are great fun, not because we are focused on some incidental benefit.

Q. Which bear has not figured things out?

Actually, you know, this Healthy Cities Conference I went to last week in Brisbane has left me feeling dirty, as though I've just been to church. I need to cleanse myself with some blasphemy. Thus I put it to you, that the planet would not care either way if humans destroyed all life upon it. It's a rock for chrissake, and rocks don't have any feelings. Which leads us to animals: since there is not an individual koala, or dolphin, or panda for whom we would forfeit our species' prosperity, it should make no difference, should it, if all of that animal's pals were to be killed by our actions as well? We humans are generally chilled about killing animals. That just leaves our descendants. But who are these people, exactly? We can no more presume they will come into being, than we can presume our children aren't gay, or career mad, or selfish, or otherwise disinclined to have children themselves. There only needs to be one all gay generation, or a generation hooked on partying and their careers, for there to be no future people, by our own choosing.

There is no logical imperative for saving the planet, yet many logical reasons to cycle. May I suggest, therefore, we all blast a few holes, shoot a few roos, read our kids Noddy, then enjoy the remaining few decades of mild cycling weather. (I think also my kids' school performance night recently, may be behind my current lack of hope for our species.)

A. .....  a prize for the funniest!