i hung out with some pretty brilliant folks tonight. our friends ben, charlotta and their little girl, teá came down from NYC and were staying at some other friends house, tony, jackie and their little boy rowan. violeta, pema and i went over to their house for a lovely dinner to celebrate the birthday of tony, happy birthday tony! teá, rowan and pema go way back, they were delivered by the same mid-wife, all within 3 weeks of each other, so it’s like their first group of friends from the 0-point on the graph, we’re talking old school. so, anyways, we ate home-made lasagna, sung happy birthday songs, tore into a chocolate cake, and ate about 9 different flavors of gelato, all with the autumn theme, replete with crookneck pumpkin, apple, pear, apple cider, fig and the like. after that, us boys went out to walk the dogs and shoot the shit. we began chatting about a whole range of subjects, everything from the protests on wall street, steve jobs psychedelic use, alternative energy, shale oil, the amount of gold in sea water and how ‘denial is not just a river in egypt’. the conversation kept circling back to the current state of affairs and the shared feeling that their is currently a lot of flux in the system, flux meaning volatility, upheaval, chaos and change. we asked each other the question, can anyone imagine things continuing as they are for the next 100, 200 years, with the amount of energy extraction, food supply, water supply, population growth, environmental pollution, climate change, growing political division, foreign policy, etc. and the answer that kept coming back was a resounding NO, none of us could really imagine how it would be possible or sustainable for business to continue as usual for that much longer. so, the next logical question was how does it change or shift to where it needs to go, and how do you define where that is. i mean it’s such a loaded, complex, huge question, it’s damn near impossible to get your mind around.
at one moment in the conversation, tony said “just imagine, for example if America said that we weren’t going to consume anymore fossil fuel and we were going to develop and work with mostly alternative energy”, an extreme far stretch of the imagination, but just as an example, he pointed out that it would immediately drop the price of petroleum and how other emerging countries, such as china, or india would snap it up in an instant at the lower price and benefit from it, and how this is obviously a major deterrent from going in that direction. then we veered into goldman sachs and how it seems they always come out on the right side of the deal, no matter how bad the deal goes, and so on. i certainly do not claim to understand one-tenth of what we discussed but near the end of our walk and talk, i felt something innocent break inside of me. i had this sinking feeling of how far away we really are from making the decisions and changes we need to make as a people on this finite planet in order for us to go in a more healthy direction, a more sustainable one and how massively complex this question is. the complexity is made more difficult by the fact that we can’t even get the people who need to sit down and make these decisions, like our world leaders, CEO’s, policy makers, etc. to sit down and talk about the issues we face because everyone and everything is so driven by the market, and if it means we are going to sacrifice our profits now for the future you can pretty much forget about it. what i feel that shifted in me was the following: instead of waiting around for some institution, group of people, or even just one other person who is not yourself to “fix it” or to bring about change is very innocent. it is a naive position to believe that someone or something outside of ourselves will do it, it is a very western view. and that brings me to dolcezza and the entity we have created. this is the forum we have to say and express and create what we believe and it is a very empowering, creative, beautiful voice, one that will touch more people than just the individual. so, that is where we will try and focus and just enjoy the fact that without ever saying a word, but by making something like crookneck pumpkin gelato, from a crazy biblical farmer named zachariah, in our ovens in georgetown, rubbing it down with his young ginger, fresh ground cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, all with our own hands, care and love, that this will resound and be heard and be tasted. and that made me feel good again.