Tuesday, April 15, 2008

410,000 Paper Cups

I always enjoy a fresh perspective and the art of Chris Jordan is a WOW. It depicts consumption in a way that statistics alone can not. Chris says, "My hope is that images representing these quantities might have a different effect than the raw numbers alone, such as we find daily in articles and books. Statistics can feel abstract and anesthetizing, making it difficult to connect with and make meaning of 3.6 million SUV sales in one year, for example, or 2.3 million Americans in prison, or 410,000 paper cups used every fifteen minutes."

This subject reminds me of a previous post Nature Education and Stuff. I've been thinking about how easy it is for kids to ask for stuff. OK I don't expect small children to consider the environmental impact of their desired toy, but parents can choose not to buy small plastic items for birthday party bags or rethink the usefulness of a toy impulsively bought to quell the screams of a toddler in the aisles of Target. (And I've done this more then once only to have it thrown into the bin of discarded desires- where it is fished out by me and given back to my child repeatedly.)

The art of Chris Jordan hit home, being the visually oriented person that I am. And since Earth Day is next week, I'll finish this post with a poem by Simon James from Days Like This A Collection of Small Poems.


Yesterday has gone
Tomorrow's yet to be,
Today is now
and always here
For everyone to see.

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