I get it. Global warming might be the most serious threat facing humanity in the long-term: coastal cities underwater, extreme weather events, the elimination of the Arctic and Antarctic ecosystems. What a terrible thing. Worse than terrorism, texting and driving, and Donald Trump combined.
And yet, when we experienced record warmth on Christmas Day in the Northeast, I couldn’t help but smile. I have an excuse, however, an exemption. I’m a wheelchair user in a walkable neighborhood, and the longer we go without snow, the more mobile I am. The more mobile I am, the happier I am. When I’m happy, I smile. I am essentially smiling about the destruction of the planet. Good thing for the exemption, or I might feel guilty.
On Christmas Day, I left the door open to our back porch for the first time in a couple of months. I went out onto my deck, down the sidewalk, into the street, zipped past my neighbor Susan’s house and arrived at the ocean. I sat by the shore with no jacket. Phoebe barked at me for leaving her behind – normal summer stuff.
So, if it was up to me, and I had the power to stop global warming, would I? Yes, I’m pretty sure I would suck it up and do the right thing for the world. I’m such a softy. But, while I officially hope the climate returns to normal and the planet survives, I can’t suppress my smile when the grass is green – it’s not even brown – in my front yard in December.
I’m unsure how the future will play out. In one scenario, the planet will remain habitable for humankind. In the alternative scenario, I will be able to wheel my way to Friday happy hour at the Snow Squall all winter long. Either way, I win.