Where I End and You Begin (The Sky is falling in)

There’s a gap in between

There’s a gap where we meet
Where I end and you begin
And I’m sorry for us” ~  Where I End And You Begin” by Radiohead

In nature nothing exists alone.”
~ Rachel Carson, Silent Spring

 

I woke up today to the sounds of low flying planes or helicopters happily spraying Btk over my entire neighbourhood in Cloverdale, BC.

My townhouse, located in a suburban complex, is also only four blocks away from Surrey farms…this area used to be covered by rainforest and some isolated small farms only 10 years ago when we moved…now, trees are increasingly rare, forest are a joke and wildlife has almost completely disappeared with the exception of a few stranded racoons and hares.

As every morning, I opened the door to Misty and Bilbo, my two old cats, and then I felt it: a penetrating, itchy smell, a sort of transparent smog. None of us went outside but my skin, eyes and nose started to itch and feel strange…I run to the computer and found “reassurance” in many government-based publications that if I stay inside for 30 minutes, wash my hands and my vegetables, I’ll be ok.

One of the publications says about using Btk to kill gypsy moths: “But the bacterial affects only the moth and, unfortunately, butterflies. Still, on balance B.t. is the most effective and safe weapon in the arsenal”. Source: Washington Department of Agriculture)

Image from a Radiohead Album
Image from a Radiohead Album

Looking deeper, I also found a publication from “No Spray Zone”: http://www.pesticide.org/get-the-facts/pesticide-factsheets/factsheets/btk

 

 

DDT is good for me
DDT is good for me

DDT is good for me source: http://loe.org/shows/segments.html?programID=12-P13-00038&segmentID=4

When I was a child, I lived with my grandma for three years. I still recall her method to get rid of head lice: she would sprinkle my head with DDT powder and then comb my hair…

DDT, believe it or not, has been approved and is back in many countries to treat not only malaria but many other diseases and crop diseases. It has the support of the World Health Organization: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2006/pr50/en/

Me at 5 or 6 An afternoon playing with ants and worms
Me at 5 or 6 – An afternoon playing with ants and worms

Looking for some fun in the Internet I found:

Another method to destroy the head lice is to dust five per cent DDT powder in 95 per cent inert talc into the hair and scalp. Care should be taken to keep the powder out of the eyes by protecting them with guaze squares. The entire head should be wrapped in a scarf or clean towel. The scarf should be removed after several hours, preferably at bedtime. The next morning, the hair should be carefully combed with a fine tooth comb to get rid of the nits and dead lice. On the seventh day of the treatment, the hair should be washed with soap and warm water and allowed to dry. Thereafter, the DDT powder should be applied again in the same manner as before. On the 14th day, the hair should be given a final shampoo. Normally, two courses of treatment are sufficient. In some cases, it may be necessary to repeat this treatment for the third time.”  (Extract from Nature Cure for Children’s Diseases, I am not kidding!)

Last evening, I was lured by a family member to watch a science fiction movie, “Interstellar” …the hook (for me) was that humanity was suffering from hunger and crop failure and lots of dust bowls were killing one crop after the next…I lost interest in the movie when I realized that it was a techno-fantasy based on the old story premises that humans just need to find another planet (or galaxy) to survive, as if all what we know about interdependence and ecology were a big joke…

We need to re-learn and enact a different relationship with the Earth. It is time for us to understand that “pests”, “weeds”, “diseases” and “epidemics”, all are a consequence of an imbalance: either the lack or the excess of something.

The so called “Disease Triangle” is well known in plant biology (more on this here)…what current “science” does is to try to eliminate the “pathogen”, completely ignoring that “pathogens” have functions in nature and not “good” or “bad” but regulators of populations, necessary to keep some balance…

The disease triangle
The disease triangle

More than an isolated “triangle”, I think nature is a big honeycomb, where you never know which one was the “first” hexagons or whether there was ever a “first”…where axis and sides converge in ways that “my” side may also be “your” side…

Where, do I ask, do we put limits to what’s good for “us” humans and where do we recognize that the health of entire ecosystems is ultimately the only health with which we can measure our own health?

 

Rachel Carson in the woods, 1962
Rachel Carson in the woods, 1962

Rachel Carson (author of “Silent Spring”) in the woods with kids, 1962 http://www.theguardian.com/science/2012/may/27/rachel-carson-silent-spring-anniversary
There’s a gap in between

There’s a gap where we meet
Where I end and you begin
And I’m sorry for us

There’s a gap in between
There’s a gap where we meet
Where I end and you begin

And I’m sorry for us
The dinosaurs roam the earth
The sky turns green
Where I end and you begin

I am up in the clouds
I am up in the clouds
And I can’t and I can’t come down
I can watch and cant take part
Where I end and where you start
Where you, you left me alone
You left me alone
X’ll mark the place
Like the parting of the waves
Like a house falling in the sea
In the sea
I will eat you alive 
There’ll be no more lies”

~ Radiohead

Why should we tolerate a diet of weak poisons, a home in insipid surroundings, a circle of acquaintances who are not quite our enemies, the noise of motors with just enough relief to prevent insanity? Who would want to live in a world which is just not quite fatal?”
~ Rachel Carson, Silent Spring

 

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