Ways the Environment Can Be More People Friendly

With all the attention the human race has paid to planet Earth recently, Rebecca Cardwell thinks, frankly, it’s time for the planet to return the favor.

Environmentalists are always talking about the things people can do to be more environmentally friendly.
But what I don’t understand is why we have to make all the effort, while Mother Nature just sits back and does nothing in return?. Last time I checked, friendship was a two-way street.

That is why I have compiled my own list, of things that Mother Nature can do to be more “people-friendly.”
If you know Mother Nature personally, I’d appreciate it if you would pass this along.


Watch Where You Aim Your Lightning Bolts

While I agree that they look cool, how many people do you think have been decapitated by these electricity-laden rods? A lot, I bet.

My grandpa says that after he was hit by lightning, his sex drive went through the roof. But since he also keeps his dentures in a bed pan and walks around the old folk’s home wearing nothing but a dickie and a urine-stained smile, he’s hardly what you’d consider a reliable source.

I’m not saying you need to get rid of them. Just confine them to one area. Or better yet, only aim them at impotent dementia-ridden old men.

The rest of us would prefer our internal organs remain uncooked, thank you very much.

Make Trees More Receptive to Hugs

I’m sure I can’t be the only one who finds it disheartening when — while embracing the trunk of a Common Bald Cypress in Central Park — the tree just stands there, motionless, indifferent to my public displays of affection.

Like my wilderness therapist says, there are only so many times a person can be rejected before they start seeking out the attention of other woody perennials.

Have Designated Smoking Areas

It’s not like back in the good old days, when a smoke was a smoke and groovin’ was groovin’ and the Marlboro Man would jump on his horse and go galloping off across the barren land just so he could buy his cigarettes in Marlboro Country because that’s where the flavor is.

Tell me, where are John Cougar Mellencamp and the Marlboro Man now?

My guess is they died. Probably of lung cancer.

Make Vegetarian Food Taste Better

An old vegan friend of mine once described tofu as, “A shy, virgin bride, eager to finally become one with her partner.” Needless to say, he and I are no longer friends.

If you want people to stop eating animals, you need to make non-animals taste better.

Throw in a couple pats of butter. Or drown them in gravy, even.

Stop Raining On Parades

Why is it that every year my paid half-day off is, like, the shittiest day ever? It’s pretty disrespectful if you ask me.

Stop Growing Poisonous Berries. Or At Least Give Us A Heads Up as to Which Ones Are Poisonous

The poisonous mushrooms, however, can stay.

Protect Your Own Damn Ozone Layer

Didn’t Grandmother Nature teach you that you can’t go around expecting others to save you from imminent destruction for you?

How would you feel if I’d asked you to stop me from losing my virginity in the back of Todd Marshall’s station wagon with the fake wood paneling during Paula Fosters’s Cinco De Mayo party?

Or put an end to the disparaging looks I get from my mother, when I tell her that if she wants grandchildren she’s going to have to conceive her own?

And one more thing: while it’s your prerogative not to use aerosol products, you really shouldn’t judge those of us who do.

Stop Charging So Much for Organic Shit

Picture this: You’re at the folk festival, just minding your own business and waiting for the Indigo Girls to take the stage so you can start a mosh pit, when out of nowhere a dreadlocked hippie walks up and offers to sell you an organic joint for twenty dollars.

Confused, you ask him what an organic joint has that a regular joint doesn’t. Laughing, he says it’s not what the organic joint has, but rather what it is. Which is a tiny dot inside a tiny dot called earth, inside a cosmic force that humans have yet to understand.

Also, you get a better buzz.

When you tell him that you thought all weed was natural, he laughs even harder. But then he stops laughing, because suddenly it dawns on him that thoughts are just tiny dots inside your brain inside a tiny dot called earth, inside a cosmic force that humans have yet to understand.

By the time he’s finished examining existentialism through a cloud of bong smoke, not only have you missed the entire concert, you also paid twenty bucks for a joint you’ll never smoke, because the last time you went “organic” you ended up face down in the 7-11 parking lot.

Illustration by Brad Jonas

Rebecca Cardwell is a writer from Vancouver, and has appeared in McSweeney's, The Rumpus, The Big Jewel, and more. You can find her at just making convo.