Nov 9, 2016

Julia Whitty, the environmental writer for Mother Jones Magazine, was recently interviewed once more about the catastrophe caused by the destruction of Deepwater Horizon, the BP oil rig that exploded in April 2010 in the Gulf of Mexico. The hook for the interview was the new film, which apparently gives short shrift to the ecological damage caused by the explosion.

Whitty noted that among the lingering effects are large bubbles filled with chemicals used to seal the well heads. These bubbles are huge and drift endlessly through the gulf and beyond, blocking the path of certain fish who every day migrate from the ocean depths to the surface, in some places beyond the gulf, a distance of some 25 miles.

I heard the interview while driving from San Francisco to Santa Barbara and so adopted the metaphor to my trip.  I was on my way to watch my younger son in his last college soccer game. He is a fifth year, redshirt senior at UC Davis playing the last game of the season against UC Santa Barbara. UCSB is the perennial soccer power in the Big West Conference and had won seven league games, tied 2 and lost none. At one point in the season they were ranked in the top 15 nationally. For its part, UC Davis was playing just below 500, a very talented if unpredictable team that had lost three straight, each by a single goal.  One of the losses had been just a week earlier to Santa Barbara.

The drive down 101 is about 5 and a half hours, along a two-lane great wall of cement winding down through the Salinas Valley,  past Paso Robles and the turn off to the Hearst Castle, past San Luis Obispo, that debutante of a town now with it's own Sephora and Apple stores.  Down through Pismo Beach, with its faux Monaco visage, past Santa Maria and finally down to the Los Caneros exit to Harder Field.

It was raining much of the way, and so perfect for an introspection. For some water boarding as it were....  And so you've spent all these years going to soccer games, I said to myself, and before that with the older boy, football games (he was a two-time all NESCAC wideout).  What is it about that need to watch your children perform.  What is it about that excitement of watching these games.  God knows I haven't missed many.  What a distraction.  What lunacy.  What a diversion from the real work to be done.... Or not....  (an idea to be continued ...   or not)

No comments: