Surface electrons

Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review.

I “ran” six miles on the eliptical trainer at lunch today. You’ve got to appreciate an employer who cares more about a happy employee and a strong newspaper than whether I was 15 minutes late coming back from lunch.

I’ve been kind of digging doing Kat’s job while she’s been out. (Not enough that I’m not going to be happy to see her and Lily when Kat comes back from maternity leave.) It feels more like real reporting when I go outside the office to meet the people, see the deeds, and hear the concepts that are fueling the modern environmental movement here in Northern Nevada.

Sometimes I feel a kind of energy running through the surface of things, and it freaks me out a little. I think the environmental movement is a little like the spiritual community. For example, until I started going to church, temple, syangogue, studio, whatever three years ago for Filet of Soul, I never realized how pervasive Reno’s spiritual community was. Now, I realize it’s everywhere, a kind of ambient energy that enfuses everything. And it’s not just in sanctified places, it’s in bars, too. I can’t tell you how many times people have asked, “Aren’t you that guy who goes to church?” when I’m shitfaced drunk and then proceed to tell me about their church or yoga studio.

And the modern environmental movement is similar. I haven’t even been long on the beat, but I’m already beginning to feel the potential energy that exists in all these disparate groups. If the spiritual community and the green community ever came together in a meaningful, sustainable way to be stewards of the Earth and the life, both human and not, upon it, it would be like a hand on a bullwhip.

But in some mildly ironic ways, the spiritual groups must focus on the body of mankind, while those most concerned with the physical world must focus on changing the hearts and minds of people.

No wonder there are more people in metaphorical prisons than in real parks.