Jim vs. Jim

Hi, Jim. What’s shakin’?  You got a minute?

Sure, Jim. What’s on your mind?

Time.

Time?

And space.

Time and space, huh?

Yep.

Tell me more, Einstein.

Okay. I’m wondering just how much time Americans actually save by yanking a cord and starting a gas-powered engine to mow, blow, trim, edge, cut, mulch, prune, clip, and shred. And what we’re doing with all that time we’ve supposedly saved.

Seriously, Jim? Don’t we all have many far more important things to be thinking about at the moment? Have you scanned the headlines recently?

Well, Jim, that gets us to my other topic: space.

How so?

In this sense: most of us live lives far removed from the halls of power where important decisions are made that can affect the lives of millions and even billions of people. You with me?

For the moment.

So a person has to wonder what he or she can do to make a real difference. You know, “What can I do in my own small way to make things even a little bit better?”

Um, okay.

Check me on this. Here’s what I’m thinking. We start with what’s right outside our doors. Our neighborhood, I mean.

And?

And we do what we can. Plant a tree. Welcome a new family to Inman Park. Join Lifelong Inman Park for an early morning stroll. Smile and be pleasant to a cashier or server. Complain, sure, but do something productive to help correct the problems you see.

I gotta ask, Jim, what has gas-powered lawn-and-garden equipment got to do with any of this?

Oh, not a lot, Jim. Not a whole lot. It’s just a hobbyhorse of mine. I can’t help but think that a few simple steps in this area could make such a huge difference. At almost no cost to us, you know, we could lower the risk, maybe just to a minuscule degree, that someone gets cancer or develops autism.

Such as?

Upgrade to a nifty lithium-battery-powered machine, like my leaf-blower or my friend Ken’s new chainsaw. Or upgrade from a 2-stroke to a cleaner-burning 4-stroke engine for all your equipment. Or just cut back on the frequency and duration of, say, the leaf-blowing  that you do (or have done) with your out-of-date technology. Or even, you know, something like this, at least some of the time …

Thanks, Jim. You’ve given me a lot to think about.

You’re welcome, Jim. It’s my  — our should I say “our”? — pleasure.

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