February 19, 2011: Let Go, Let Flow

Today I spent a couple of hours tabling at Somerville’s winter farmers’ market on behalf of Somerville Climate Change. (“That’s a verb?” my mother asked earlier this morning when I’d told her what I’d planned to be doing today.Yes, it is.)

Mostly we SCA folks talked with passersby about our “350 Challenge,” i.e. encouraging 350 Somerville households, neighborhoods, schools to take one positive action towards reducing Somerville’s emissions, encouraging sustainability, etc. And, as you might have expected, the sorts of people who shop at a winter farmers’ market were positive, curious, eager to do their part.

‘Course the “teutonic” me, the me that loves order and charts and graphs and checklists found these 350 Challenge conversations, lively as they were, a little frustrating. “How are we keeping track of who’s doing what? How do people register, so to speak, so their individual action can be counted? Huh?”

But, hey, it’s early days; this challenge is just getting started. So this accounting mechanism will happen. I have faith.

And, besides, the fact that one of the initiatives we’re pushing is around depaving should calm that teutonic me right down:

Fact: Somerville is 77% paved over.

Fact: We had terrible flooding last year.

Fact: Today, when I talked about rain water and “Where will it go?” I saw keen interest in the eyes of my listeners. Ditto, when I showed pictures of SCA depaving a Somerville back yard last fall.

So maybe I should let go of my need for record-keeping and just believe that this shared community concern of impassable streets and flooded basements WILL capture the interest of lots of people who, over time, will contact SCA for volunteer help, guidance, resources.

And when they do, . . .

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