As it turns out, the Earth and I are the same age. I’m actually 6 months older. (I’m writing this on 4/22/2010, Earth Day.)
I don’t subscribe to cable, satellite, or even broadcast television. I know that it’s Earth day, but I am unaware of what most people are doing on this day. It’s not a holiday I’ve ever really celebrated. For me, there are so many similar themed holidays that I’m often confused. Walk to Work Day, Bike to Work Day, Buy Nothing Day, No Smoking Day, Buy Local Day, Don’t Buy Gas Day, Plant a Tree day, and even Nude Bike Day.
How else would you celebrate Earth Day? We could exchange gifts, but they should to be hand made ones. After all, consumerism is generally not an environmentalist theme. We could all go to a park or hike in the woods, except we don’t have the day off.
It may not seem like it, but I am in favor of Earth Day. However there seems to be no cohesive element to bring us all together. Earth Day needs something totally unrelated, and magical to make it special. For example, Christmas has Santa Claus; Easter has a magical rabbit; Halloween has costumes and monsters and Independence Day (America) has fireworks.
People celebrate Earth day in 500 different ways and this does not do too much to bring us all together. Earth Day needs a focus. Not having had my coffee yet today, I suggest a giant Earth Day Worm mascot. It could be in parades like done with a Chinese dragon. We could make up all sorts of tales to entertain our children how the worm nibbles on the seeds to make them grow into flowers, trees, and food.
Earth Day also needs time. Many people celebrate Earth Day in different ways, but it’s only 40 years old. Humans have been celebrating the winter solstice since before recorded history. Realize, it’s only recently that the idea of Santa Claus has come to dominate Christmas. Forty years is simply not long enough for traditions to get filtered through. Though, in the current information age, the internet can spread traditions so it may take a lot less time.
I will celebrate Earth Day the same way I do every day. I will think about what I purchase, walk when I can, reuse instead of dispose, etc. But if I do this everyday, then today is not very special. I will write my representatives and ask that Earth Day be considered a holiday— a day off for all workers. Maybe then the country as a whole can come up with a special united way to celebrate it.