Monday, April 23, 2007

Oooh, the things we do for love

I am a tree hugger. An environmentalist. Environmental protection is a large part of my job. I have always smugly believed that recreational activities should be of the self propelled kind, there is no need to burn fossil fuels to have fun. So how did I mark Earth Day?

I went shopping for an SUV. A behemoth, belching, gorilla of an SUV. To replace the slightly smaller, but still belching, guzzling pig already sitting in our driveway.

“Why?” you ask.

For love of course.

When B and I met over five years ago we had some different interests. B enthusiastically embraced a lot of mine, like hiking, kayaking, and snowshoeing. I took up hockey and we play on a beer league co-ed team together. But B’s big love is waterskiing. It has been since he was barely out of diapers. He is an awesome skier, gracefully cutting huge arcs of spray. He can even ski barefoot. And on his wakeboard he jumps around like a 20 year old dude.

As our first summer together approached, I was in conflict. B really wanted me to share his love of boating and skiing. But hauling the boat up to the lake with a gas guzzling SUV, and then spending the day burning more fuel with a powerful motor boat was against my principles.

So what did I do? See for yourself:

I took up wakeboarding. At age 45. I even have my own chick board, wet suit and gloves. Apparently my principles fly out the window when love walks through the door. Actually love only got me started, it was the discovery that playing on the lake with a powerful boat is huge fun that really made me sell out. So I am a slut for a good time.

How do I rationalize my environmentalism with my motorized fun? I don’t. I am gifted at rationalization, but even I can’t think of one for this.

Back to the Earth Day SUV shopping. Our old SUV does not have the cojones to safely pull the new boat we bought last year. We need a, gulp, um, bigger one.

Yes, I am headed to eco-hell for sure, where I will spend eternity cleaning out toxic ashes from the devil’s furnaces. But I’ll have a roaring good time getting there.

Today's dream travel destination: Pitt Lake, on a hot summer weekend, swimming, skiing, wakeboarding, and having a barbeque on a secluded beach with friends.


Ian Lidster said...

Oh I won't go into the compromises I've made for love. Some I've regretted, some I still accept as the best things I've ever done.
Loved your Pitt Lake photos. Haven't been there in years. Took me back to my misspent youth.


CS said...

Same for me. It does funny things to you. (Just don't get a Hummer, please!)

Voyager said...

Ian, I am intrigued by your "misspent youth" at Pitt Lake.

CS, Hummer no. But the GMC Envoy B says we need is almost as shameful.

Diana said...

The things we do for love. I adore that you did this on Earth Day. We have a shameful SUV, too. There are many days during the winter that our other two vehicles wouldn't even get us out of the driveway. I'd love to get rid of it, but there you are.

Jazz said...

The things I've done for love... they might not include an SUV, but I'll meet you in hell for sure.

Voyager said...

Diana, There is a good reason to have a vehicle that can get you out in the snow. Here we put our SUV into 4WD for snow about once a year.

Jazz, I'm happy to know you'll be joining me in hell, we'll have fun!

thethinker said...

Since you did it for love, it's perfectly acceptable.

Jocelyn said...

Great photos! You'll just have to come up with some really tortured way to repay the eco-debt. I know a guy who rides his bike everywhere, and anytime he accepts a ride in a car, he tracks the mileage and then makes himself "pay it back" by skiing that distance during the winter.

No real logic there.

Voyager said...

Glad you dropped in. I like your theory that love trumps all, even principles.

No, I don't see the skiing for miles logic either. Maybe I could plant a tree for every time I go boating. Or at least hug one.


Voyager said...

OOps, Sorry Jocelyn, I wrote Diana's name by mistake. While I was writing my comment to you, Diana's profile pic was opposite the writing box. At least you can take comfort I chose a very nice wrong name to call you.

Coffee-Drinking Woman said...

Hybridm think Hybrid. There are some hybrid SUVs out there.... the Toyota highlander hybrid comes standard with a V6 and lots of torque and a whole bunch of other gearhead stuff I don't get. And, I can tell you that a Toyota V4 is WAAAAAAY more powerfull than a GM V8. (Okay, that's just empirical evidence from cars I've personally driven...)

Voyager said...

Teri, I would love to drive a hybrid. However, B. informs me none of the hybrids are powerful enough to pull our boat, which, with the trailer, weighs close to 5800 lbs when loaded.