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Thursday, May 19, 2011

Tiny Bees and Gigantic Whales

Millions of bees are dying due to a phenomenon coined Colony Collapse Syndrome. No one is quite sure of the cause. Some scientists blame pesticides, malnutrition, genetically modified crops and climate change to name a few but one stands out starkly because it seems to be following a pattern; electromagnetic radiation or for the layman, cell phones. We are probably killing off billions of bees because of technology.

It doesn't just end with bees. One might say, well okay, so no more honey (which is for you trivia buffs, the only food that can't 'go bad'--found perfectly sweet in wrecks of Viking ships and royal Bronze Age burial plots) but thousands of plant species are dependent upon bees for pollination. And thousands of insect species, and mammals and so on are dependent on those plant species. This is why the word 'Collapse' is in there. The house of cards is facing a catastrophic typhoon, proportions of which we can't even comprehend the toll and if you ask the next person if they've ever heard of it, they'd probably shrug, 'Bees. They sting. Good riddance'.

I'm no granola crunchy hippie tree-hugger. In fact, until a few years ago I was positively disgustingly smug conservative until it dawned on me the only thing vociferous conservatives are interested in conserving are their own very specific special interests and not at all as I understood it to be which was to conserve, like the grasshopper and the ant, to work and save for the winter for everyone but now winter is here and everyone is saying 'what's in it for me' and it makes my heart hurt. Forget 'what about the children'. What about the bees because it's gonna affect the children and we have to do something now. Luckily for the bees it appears that they might be gaining in numbers so I'm hoping they all fall in love and keep making more honey and pollinating like crazy kids.

Then there are the whale strandings or what most of us know as 'beached whales'. Multiple species of whale are falling off established migratory patterns and if you do a Google search, the same reasons are given as for the bees and in this case, in the Pacific and Atlantic at least, where whales need to go North to mate and give birth--they're getting LOST. How the fuck does a whale get lost? And you read 'cruise ship noise' and you do a facepalm because we're killing them too, tiny bees and gigantic whales. Signals we need to communicate over distances to each other are affecting and threatening their existence. 

It dawns on me. Distance. It's always distance. Mixed signals like the telephone game, where the message is totally beyond comprehension at the end; funny when kids are playing it at a basement birthday party but not so funny when we're trying to communicate.

We're so far away from each other and the internet brings us so close it gives a false intimacy as if it's real and to many it is but to many it's the perfect foil to hide behind anonymity and pretend you're one thing when you're another. It's so easy to be tempted. Years ago no one would have ever dreamed of the possibility of romance with someone 1000 miles or more away and now not only is it happening but it's thriving and people are moving great distances to be together and some of them end up going off course and getting lost and never reestablishing their old patterns.

Now I'm at the end of one relationship and fingers (but thankfully not oceans) crossed, may be embarking on another after a brief period of FREE FREE I'M FREE but have the dumb luck to find the most common with one least close geographically. And proceeding very very cautiously because someone once told him it wasn't real and someone once told me it wasn't real and this one was burned and that one was burned and even though BOTH of us thought it was real with the other now have to check our sonar and radar and cellphones to make sure it's not mixed-signals. And it pisses me off. 

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