Listen up, sports fans: your favorite weekly magazine is worried about global warming, and how it might impact your next trip to the ballpark. I kid you not.
In fact, Sports Illustrated is so concerned about this issue that it’s the cover-story of the March 12 issue. Just read the hysterical opening paragraph (h/t Drudge):
The next time a ball game gets rained out during the September stretch run, you can curse the momentary worthlessness of those tickets in your pocket. Or you can wonder why it got rained out -- and ask yourself why practice had to be called off last summer on a day when there wasn't a cloud in the sky; and why that Gulf Coast wharf where you used to reel in mackerel and flounder no longer exists; and why it's been more than one winter since you pulled those titanium skis out of the garage.
Nice beginning, dontcha think? And here’s the truly delicious punchline:
Global warming is not coming; it is here. Greenhouse gases -- most notably carbon dioxide produced by burning coal, oil and gas -- are trapping solar heat that once escaped from the Earth's atmosphere. As temperatures around the globe increase, oceans are warming, fields are drying up, snow is melting, more rain is falling, and sea levels are rising.
SI, as the bastion of scientific reason, had the decency of making some suggestions:
Turbines mounted on upper decks would catch the same wind that plays whimsically with pop flies, turning it into the source of power to offset at least some of the energy demands of a ball game. Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass., features a water filtration and reuse system that collects and recirculates "black" and "gray water" to make the most of all that beer and all those flushes.
Yet, the best was saved for last:
"It's the last of the semipagan calendars we keep," [writer and activist Bill] McKibben says, "and a lot of it is going to disappear. All that Bart Giamatti stuff" -- the pastoral invocations of the former commissioner of baseball -- "has a different valence if we're not going to Florida for spring training, but to St. Paul. We're still so used to the idea that we can deal with the forces of nature that we think nothing of naming our teams Hurricanes and Cyclones. In 10 years, that will be like calling a team the Plagues."
Ten years. That's two-and-a-half Olympiads -- enough time for our teams and athletes to take the lead, galvanize attention and influence behavior. When they do, per usual, may we cheer and may we follow. But as we watch, let us remember that this game is different. We don't have the luxury of looking on from the sidelines. We must become players too.
Truly unbelievable. Now I've got to put up with this nonsense while watching a baseball game.
What's the world coming to?