This is Monday, December 12. It is the first day of the AGU meeting in San Francisco. I am trying to follow it as well as I can by the on-demand web viewing option. It looks like an unsatisfactory method.
One of the speakers that I managed to get to was Prince Albert, of Monico. I really only picked up the end of the presentation. The most interesting aspect of his talk came at the end, when a lady took control from the audience by shouting a question. She was about to be cut off because the Prince had to catch a plane and she was not yet up to the microphone. Her shouted question got the Prince’s attention.
She first bemoaned the fact that the scientific community has explained climate change ad infinitum, but to no avail. She ended with a cry that we knew the world was going to hell in a hand basket, yet we set around in calm discussions about how we might know about it or deal with it. The Prince’s response was weak, to say the least.
The importance of this exchange, for me, was that I realized there are others in the membership who feel as I do. In addition, I was confronted with my own inadequacies. For years I have harbored the fantasy that, as a way of drawing attention to the publication of my book, if that ever happens, I would set fire to myself. What bullshit. One thing that is clear is that I no longer can embrace that fantasy. Even the threat of rain was enough to keep me from taking an action which might have had some purchase on getting support from the scientific community.
Now it’s Wednesday, December 14. I’ve missed most of the meeting. It’s been, pretty much, a waste of the week. I’ve been badly depressed. This I attribute mainly to having to admit just how profoundly I have been influenced by my handicap. I have concluded that I can no longer do almost anything requiring physical presence or participation. That may not be entirely accurate, but the reality seems to be that to accomplish things requires more time than most people are willing to await.
What that means remains to be seen. At the very least, I think my only way forward will be to find a publisher, or possibly to start a forum where the idea of “how bad it might get” will be discussed. Currently I am doing virtually nothing award either goal.