Auntie Ruth is a born worrier. It’s just what she does. It’s probably in the genes, or maybe it’s a nurture-born fact of life: There’s just so much to worry about, one must be an efficient worrier to keep up with it all.
When efficiency falters, Auntie Ruth replaces quality of worry with quantity of worry. By worrying all the time, Auntie Ruth never falls behind in her worrying, i.e., if you don’t wash your clothes, they grow in big heaps and you spend all your time rooting around in the laundry looking for socks. Auntie Ruth knows where the socks are: She knows what she’s worrying about and why. Generally, she knows exactly why she can’t do anything about the source of her worries. And when she can, she does, with all the chutzpah of—how did Björk put it?—an army of me.
So, when SN&R’s Hugh Biggar recently followed up on The New York Times Magazine’s article about how Sacramento is the next New Orleans—floodwise—images of Midtown 20 feet underwater introduced new furrows to Auntie’s brow. Better go buy a boat. Get a big boat, help out the neighborhood. Stock the boat with two kinds of every soup—low sodium and regular, maybe they’ll mate—and organic water (kid you not, Llanllyr Source water out of Wales claims to be organic. Auntie Ruth would stock it not because she believes such hooey, but it will be good for a laugh as we float over the Tower Bridge, at which time we’ll need a good laugh).
Note that in the floods of 1860s, the governor had to go to his inauguration in a rowboat, which proves incontrovertibly that Jerry Brown has been reincarnated as, well, Jerry Brown.
And keeping up with the worry train, Gov. Brown recently signed legislation assigning a fee to rural Californians for fire prevention and protection. Yep: Our infrastructure has grown that ragged. And while Auntie Ruth supports the notion, it is, on the furrowed browometer, strangely akin to having to buy water and bring it home in our cars. Which we do already. Except now it could be organic. Whatever in the good hell that means.
And if fire and rain isn’t enough for a good worry and a James Taylor song, there’s always death. Look for eco-funerals as the coming green fad—no cement vaults, no fancy caskets, no formaldehyde. More next week.