I look out of the window and see the cars go by. Many cars. Several hundred every hour, I would guess. What is so important that they all have to go there? Don’t they know that peak-oil is near (if not here) and they are wasting crucial oil reserves? Seriously, we should start saving those fossil fuels for the future (and for the things which really matter like research and prototyping for better alternative energy production, a better energy-saving public transport system etc.) instead of burning them off as if there is no tomorrow.
Yeah, this peak-oil thing is really getting to me. I mean, I have known and preached for years that we have to change the way we live, that we have to save energy, consume less, find a more sustainable way of living etc. but I always assumed that we have a few decades left to make the transition. We might not have that much time. It might be a matter of a few years or maybe even just month till we are seriously on the downward slope. I have switched to internal panic mode, expecting a big bang any second. I found an American internet forum of people who are preparing for life after the oil crash. They are stocking up on salt, seeds, toilet paper and ammunition, for God’s sake. I should ridicule them, point my finger at them and laugh out loud (which is what I did when people filled their bath tubs with fresh water on Dec. 31, 1999, because they expected TEOTWAWKI because of the 2000 bug). I can’t. I think, this time they might be right to worry. I don’t know if a stockpile of seeds will do much to save you if you are a prisoner of suburbian hell, but I surely appreciate that people are starting to be aware, personally, passionately aware on how serious this problem is.
With all the global problems which have accumulated over the past decades of industrialism, from land erosion to climate change and from overpopulation to overfishing, oil depletion is the one thing that will bring down the whole capitalistic free market craze. People will no longer be able to consume all those fancy needless goods like plasma TVs, cellphones and SUVs put together by low wage workers in Bangladesh, China or whereever, because without cheap oil it will not be possible to build them, transport them and sell them. That whole system will crash or at least decay rapidly. And it will happen soon, so soon that many people will have no idea what hit them.
There comes the panic feeling again — reality check, looking out of the window, cars still there. Am I going bananas here? You know that the lemming thing was a Disney fraud (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_Wilderness), don’t you? Lemmings do mass migrate when they reach overpopulation, but they don’t jump off cliffs. Humans seem to hold the monopole on the mass suicide deal.
So, am I stocking tinned food, salt and ammunition yet? No. But I do look out of the window counting cars more and more frequently. I am planning a vegetable garden. While this is something I wanted to do anyway, growing my own food, I mean, it has started to get a higher priority in my head than before, moving from „nice to have in the future“ to „something I should seriously work on right now“.
I also decided to finally fresh up my first aid knowledge, something I wanted to do for years (I took a first aid course as a teenager, but I doubt if I could recall the important things when need arises). A two day course costs about 30 € and the Red Cross and other organisations have them almost every weekend.
When I cycled to work this morning, I saw some deer on a field. Maybe I should buy some broadheads for my arrows, just to be prepared, meat on the table, putting my longbow to good use, you know … but that might be going a little too far at the moment … reality check, cars … not returned to stone age yet.