Think Globally, Act Locally

"It ain't much I'm asking if you want the truth. Heres to the future; hear the cry of youth. I want it all, I want it all, I want it all, and I want it now." Queen

My first real dose of responsibility came in the form of a key chain--a Digital Doggie Giga Pet, to be exact. Called Isis by me (and I'm sure much more unpleasant names by others, as the clear plastic toy managed to make noise constantly), the digital pet definitely taught me a thing or two about taking care of others.

I remember sitting in Mrs. Orr's third grade class, making plans for our upcoming restaurant day, when out of the locker came an odd noise. Like a true mother to her child, I knew it was my baby's cry.

Luckily, there were a number of other mothers and fathers among this group of ten year olds and quite a few of us darted to the lockers and dug into the realms of our backpacks. The interruption caused pure pandemonium in the once peaceful classroom.

...And that was the day Giga Pets (and Tamagotchi's!) were banned from Mrs. Orr's classroom.

The thing about Isis, though, was that I loved to play with her when she was fun. I loved feeding her and "walking" her, but once things started to go a wry, I wasn't quite as interested- thus she was banned to my backpack.

In a sense, this is the American way. We want the fun of it all and the fruit of the labor, but we don't actually want to do the work.

Instead of buckling down and persevering through the hard times, though, we've made alternative options.

For example, kids (well, mostly kids) want to play video games, however they don't want to be overweight and out of shape. So, instead of creating an incentive and telling the children that if they ride their bikes for an hour they can play video games for an hour too, we give them Wii. Because I am somewhat of a Wii virgin, I don't want to speak poorly of the invention. From what I can tell, it seems much more promising than Mario Kart or '007. However, the toy does seem to fit right into the American lifestyle.

Eating locally is another societal trend. Nothing is cooler than wearing Tory Burch flats while carrying an eco-friendly Anya Hindmarch tote full of avocados and rhubarb from your own backyard, apparently.

However, while we all want the benefits of the local produce, we don't want to put the work into a garden. And so, people like Trevor Paque are willing to lend a hand. He probably had no idea that his green thumb would one day turn into green in his bank account (And that right there is the beauty of doing what you love).

Some people claim that they want the health benefits but just don't have the time to grow a garden. (While this may be true, I think it's also because they want to be able to joke with their neighbors about sweet Trevor and his carrots- you've got to keep up with the times!) In the chaos of it all, though, maybe it turns out that you don't really reap what you sow. Perhaps, in the end, you reap what you can afford.

In these troubled times, though, we should all take a moment to look at Berea College. While I personally am not quite ready to sacrifice IU's athletics and accommodations, you can't help but be impressed by their work ethic. I'm not sure if raw manual labor will ever be as trendy as raw Mange-Tout, but it's worth a shot. Before we know it, we might be calling farmers kings and iBankers paupers.