Friday, March 20, 2009

The First Day of Spring

By Alan Caruba

The early morning snowfall that greeted the first day of spring on parts of the East Coast seems symbolic to me of the undeniable fact that the Earth is into its tenth year of a cooling cycle. As it continues to cool, perhaps for another twenty to thirty years, such snowfall will not be regarded as anything but old news.

These seasonal and climate cycles are, of course, entirely natural. The last mini ice age lasted from around 1500 to 1850. It changed history in a lot of ways by causing in part the French Revolution when crop failure caused the price of bread to soar. Here in the colonies, soldiers in the Continental Army spent a frozen winter at Valley Forge.

For me, the date has personal significance because March 21, also occasionally the first day of spring, marks my late parent’s anniversary. Robert and Rebecca Caruba married in 1928 just in time to witness the crash of Wall Street the following year and to begin raising a family, my older brother and I, throughout the whole of the Great Depression. It was made worse by the then-Congress and White House, and we are watching this spectacle repeat itself.

Though it may seem odd, the first day of spring for me also rings the bell for the opening of the termite season. As a public relations counselor, I have several decades of experience working with the New Jersey Pest Management Association and have gained a healthy respect for all manner of pest species. They don’t care about economic cycles, wars, or other human problems. They are the great masters of survival.

Annually termites do more damage to homes throughout the United States than the combined effects of storms, fires, and earthquakes. Rarely covered by homeowner’s insurance, it is estimated they cause $5 billion in damage every year. A lot of homeowners are going to discover they have been playing host to large colonies of termites that have been eating the guts out of their house for three to five years. Those winged termites that cluster around window sills are the tell-tale sign.

Poets, of course, have always celebrated spring for its symbolic value. Spring is about the Earth’s astonishing ability to renew itself after the hibernation of winter in the northern hemisphere. Trees sprout leaves again, flowers pop out of the ground, and all manner of life returns or begins as eggs hatch and the cycle of birth continues among the creatures who share the Earth with us.

The first day of spring is as good a time as any to help yourself to a large amount of humility about the human race. There have been billions of such first days as the Earth spins its merry way around the Sun. After numerous mass extinctions, life has always renewed itself with new species.

Those who keep telling you that humans are to blame for the climate or various natural calamities are idiots.

Humans have been around for about 10,000 years. Our “carbon footprint” has no impact on the climate, nor does that of the countless other creatures with whom we share the planet, including the termites that produce an amazing amount of CO2 as they chew through your home.

It’s time for the poets to pen a thousand new odes to spring.

It’s time for the flowers to blossom again.

It’s time to get your home inspected by your local pest management firm.

It’s time to pay your taxes so Obama can “redistribute” them.

It’s a good time to fall in love with life itself and someone other than yourself.


Guy said...

What a beautiful first day it is here in Ohio. It was mighty cold this morning though (25 degrees F), when I got a call from a local surveyor. He has the job of laying the ground work for the seismologist team that is about to arrive and test our area to see if we have any oil or gas below us. I'm encouraged to see that serious exploration has resumed around here. We'll see if they can find and extract anything without the EPA, the government, or the greenies getting in the way. I don't know if we'd want them actually drilling on our property, since there are very few places on our property that are suitable for a well other than right in our front yard, but we're certainly going to cooperate with their efforts to search. From what we understand, they need to test large areas, and if they find a formation worth tapping, it can be done from any one of a number of locations in the surrounding area. Of course, if we should happen to be sitting on the motherlode, we'll probably just find another place to live ... like in Beverly Hills!

After he left, I grabbed a fishing pole and took the dogs out for a walk. Shortly thereafter, I reeled in my first nice bass of the year. Life is good, despite the uncertainties bearing down upon us, and one thing's for sure ... we will endure whatever this government can throw at us. We're Americans ...

Happy Spring everyone!

Rich Kozlovich said...

Question - Do anti-pesticide activists hire pest control companies to treat their homes when they are attacked by termites?

Answer - You better believe it!

Question - Do anti-pesticide activists think that their home is more important than the lives of millions of hapless people all over the world?

Answer - _____________(fill in the blank!)