It is more and more difficult to keep an optimistic outlook and perspective in an increasingly desperate world. It’s easier to dwell on superficialities, get caught up in things that don’t matter, and lose sight of what’s important. Travel through less-developed regions helps remind us of our good fortune. But, the idea is to be able to count our blessings wherever we may be – and not sweat the small stuff.
Me, Now - The Absurdity of Advertising “Advertising is based on one thing - happiness. Happiness is the smell of a new car. It’s freedom from fear. It’s a billboard on the side of a road that screams with reassurance that whatever you’re doing is OK. You are OK.” - Don Draper (Mad Men) Unicorns, like free markets, don’t exist. In high-school, we learn about Adam Smith’s free-market economy - an “invisible hand” guiding the “reasonable man”. However, upon closer inspection it becomes evident that the “invisible hand” is nothing more [...]
Healthy Hydration - Drinking Water Treatment “Blue are the life-giving waters taken for granted. They quietly understand” - Jimi Hendrix Not A Drop To Drink Many of us who are privileged enough to live in the developed world take many things for granted. Immediate access to clean drinking water is perhaps the most useful advantage to our health and welfare that can be desired. The fact that water is piped directly to our kitchens, bathrooms and laundry rooms is one thing. The convenience that hot water comes out of one faucet [...]
Plastic Pollution - Life In A Polymer World “I was born with a plastic spoon in my mouth.” - Pete Townshend Plastic Pollution Plaguing the Planet We wouldn’t get far in our day without it. Although it has only been around for less than a hundred years, its ubiquity compels our dependency on it. The vast majority of products manufactured today include it in some form or another, if they aren’t made out of it entirely. It is lightweight, durable, versatile, convenient and cheap. Human civilization has moved from the Stone [...]
Conscience Food Choices - The Case for Veganism “I tried to amend my carnivorous habits.” - Jimmy Buffett We are not vegans, but we have been eating a plant-based diet for nearly twenty years. Our reasons for this have been based on health and moral concerns. Study after study show that meat consumption leads to an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancer and obesity, among other diseases. And, the horrible treatment of animals in the mass production of meat products is well documented. Thirty years ago, those who cared [...]
“When you travel, remember that a foreign country is not designed to make you comfortable. It is designed to make its own people comfortable.” -Clifton Fadiman Responsible Selfishness Most of us travel to make ourselves better or browner, and our time and effort is used to learn, see and experience as much as we can. We travel to exotic places to benefit from the culture and surroundings, but do the local culture and environment benefit from our presence? Although we may leave some money in the local economy, we also leave the impression of being too rude, demanding, immature, opinionated, [...]
Yoga And Scuba Diving - The Zen Of Blowing Bubbles “The ocean stirs the heart, inspires the imagination and brings eternal joy to the soul.” - Robert Wyland Underwater Meditation My heart is pounding, my body is shaking and my mind is racing. I’m terrified … but of what? Jumping into the ocean - something I had done countless times before. So, why am I so afraid this time? It is our first day scuba diving and due to a mix up at the dive shop scheduling PADI open water courses, [...]
Give a hoot - don't pollute! Lend a hand - care for the land!" - Woodsy Owl Environmental Travel Environmental degradation is a serious global problem that cannot be ignored, especially when we travel. Although basic environmental awareness and protection may seem like afterthoughts in a western economy, they are enlightened by developing-world standards. Below are some socially conscious travel tips to help lighten your environmental footprint wherever you may be. Despite the tent card, straws are served with beverages in La Paz, Mexico Leave Some For The Fish Given the world’s dwindling supply of [...]