photo by Lydia Stern

Just Believe!

It is a busy time—even when flights are being cancelled and some people with reservations aren’t getting in. It seems busier and more stressful when the trucks delivering food to local restaurants are late getting to the mountains and hungry tourist families get cranky. Throw in freezing pipes, burst water mains and ice flows in the Gunnison River and it’s crazy. Thank goodness when all seems lost, there is a chance to escape the madness…

I heard that anyone who reads and reposts this editorial has a chance to get rich. Apparently, and it was confirmed by Good Mourning America, Mark Zuckerberg will give some lucky readers actual shares of stock in Facebook worth millions of dollars and a magical white unicorn if they repost this. Soooo, just in case, you will see this on all my social media feeds for the next few days. Believe!

Strange how the truth works. Hey, did you hear? Obamacare is working for everyone! You can keep your insurance plan if you like it and premiums will go down. While no doubt helping many get some sort of health insurance coverage, it is a kick in the groin for a lot of the people I know in the “middle class” category. Thank goodness those in Congress will get together to figure out how to fix the issues and make it better because that’s what they do.

This one is obviously true as well: If the United States and Russia just bomb the hell out of those bad people in Yemen and Libya and Iraq and Syria—we win! There are no repercussions for killing people. Thank God (ours, not theirs) we can use 20-year-olds on joysticks in Nevada to fire missiles from drones onto the “bad guys over there.” It’s just like playing Call of Duty in the comfort of your living room. And even if there were real ramifications, those people are different and don’t react like we would if our parents and children were killed. They wouldn’t want to do whatever they could to retaliate against governments that perhaps abused their over-the-top violent power to destroy their lives. No way. Thank goodness we found those biological laboratories and weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Thank goodness we got rid of those irritating bullies running rogue governments in the desert and now we have democracy in the Middle East. We win!

Oh my. It must be time to repeal marijuana legalization in Colorado. Just as predicted, every high school kid in Crested Butte is a zombie weeder wandering Elk Avenue with a bag of Doritos in his or her shaky little mittens. I hear the same phenomenon is now happening in Gunnison. Plus, the number of deaths by marijuana overdose cases has not gone down with legalization. They are still at zero. Unacceptable. Now, while there are no doubt some issues with edibles and some more public acceptance of stoners, legal weed has brought the apocalypse as predicted and we need to repeal it.

As we move away from dirty fossil fuels like coal to heat our homes at 9,000 feet above sea level, we have a cleaner option in natural gas. Oops. Well, except for things like that inconvenient Aliso Canyon gas leak in California that is pumping something like 100,000 pounds of methane into the atmosphere every hour and no one can figure out how to stop it. Methane, by the way, is 72 times more impactful to the earth’s atmosphere than carbon dioxide. It is being called the worst environmental disaster since the BP oil spill in the Gulf. Meanwhile that crazy Elon Musk is working toward using solar as our primary energy source through inventing adequate power storage and mulling ideas of how to harness the sun. As noted, “The sun, that highly convenient and free fusion reactor in the sky, radiates more energy to the Earth in a few hours than the entire human population consumes from all sources in a year. This means that solar panels, paired with batteries to enable power at night, can produce several orders of magnitude more electricity than is consumed by the entirety of human civilization.” But that free solar energy is more expensive than coal and natural gas. We can’t go there. Can we?

If Crested Butte just focuses on the more and the bigger, we all win. Let’s look at other places we sort of don’t like, but kinda do want to be like and do what they’re doing in our own ultra cool Crested Butte way. We can hire a bunch of consultants and pay them a lot of money to tell us what will work here because it’s worked there. And then we all will make a lot of money, get all the benefits and none of the negatives with zero degradation to our quality of life and our lives will be suddenly bigger and filled with more. What’s the problem? Where’s that unicorn?

It is the end of 2015—a time to mark new beginnings and look ahead. So, take the time to think about what you might want to see different in the coming year. Then repost this on social media, go to the blue lamp post at Third and Elk (hidden beneath the green lamp post at Third and Elk), close your eyes as the full moon sets behind Red Lady and wait for those shares of Facebook to come your way on a white unicorn. Why take the chance that it isn’t true? Just believe!

Here’s to a thoughtful 2016…

—Mark Reaman

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