Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Ja, mei!

Exactly 10 years since I've known you. The image of this 27 year old, very unusual, young man that has come to be my friend, is still vivid. How refreshingly idealistic you were, in your attitude towards the environment most of all. Way ahead of me and my times in your respect and regard for it. Still remember wondering how crazed you must be to never use the elevator or an escalator. Bounding up every flight of stairs, still getting to the top before I did, one crazy German! The possibility of ever owning anything as wasteful as a car seemed as distant to you as the end of the world through global warming seemed to me.

10 years later, are you older and wiser now? And does maturity manifest itself as indifference?

Several years ago I read (what was to ignorant me) a shocking article about the Atlantic bluefish tuna. Since commercial fishing habits began in the 1950's, its population has dropped by up to 97%. In 12 years it could be extinct. 12 years. It takes 30 years for one of these fish to reach its maximum size and weight of 450 kg. They could be extinct in less than half of that. I'm sure at this point anyone would spontaneously point out that the fate of the Tuna is not any different to that of countless other endangered creatures and other dwindling natural resources. So another one will bite the dust. So what? At least the rest of them don't end up in a can!

Well, in my small insignificant way as a consumer, I vowed never to let my lips touch another delicious piece of Tuna again. Will there be less tuna cans in the store, stocked up high, lest they run out? Maybe not, nevertheless I'll do my bit.

My beloved matured, converted environmentalist, what did you bring home for dinner last night? A Tuna fish pizza. "Why Tuna fish?" I asked. "We don't eat Tuna any more!"
"Ja, mei!" was your response!

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