Saturday, October 27, 2007

I would like to applaud the Californian public school system (namely, the Goleta Union School District) for not only teaching me that littering is wrong, but for ingraining it so deeply in my conscience that it is now an irrefutable moral issue. In particular, I'd like to give a hand to Mrs. Melanie Dickey, my teacher in 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grade at Isla Vista Elementary School, because it was through her environmental science lessons that I learned that Styrofoam products are not biodegradable, and to this day I still feel guilty when I use a Styrofoam plate or cup. One day in 4th grade we all brought lunches in which everything was recyclable and we wouldn't have to throw anything away. (Except I remember Mrs. Dickey forgot to bring a cloth napkin, like she had told all of us to, and had to use a disposable paper towel instead. I kind of lost faith in her a little bit that day...a class of 25 4th graders all managed to bring cloth napkins, but the teacher couldn't? Come on...) Anyway, yesterday I carried around a candy wrapper for an hour because I couldn't find a trash can. Had my sense of littering morality not been so strong, I would have done what every other person in Brasil does and just thrown it on the ground. Looking around, it wouldn't have made a difference, maybe made the ground a little more colorful. But I just couldn't. I could not throw it on the ground, to blow around for several years to come, when I was bound to find a trash can eventually. My conscience really could not have handled it. So good job, California. You taught this 4th grader a lesson that she can't forget.

On an unrelated note, I would like to know what it is that compels a person to play with fireworks at 8 in the morning on a Saturday. I think I've figured out that fireworks explode at about the 8th-story level in the sky, which is why I bet they're much more fun when you're on the ground than if you're sleeping in an 8th floor apartment with an open window. I went out on my balcony to watch, and the crackles and pops were at eye level. Not only is that annoying, it's kind of scary as well. Just add it to my "Why Living in Brasil is a New Adventure Every Day" list. :)

1 comment:

Patrick said...

I know your picture shows that you are obviously not in Brazil, but seriously, are you living in China right now? The trash thing and the fireworks are something that I noticed too.