My life, in the broad sense of the word, is anything BUT sustainable. I can’t elaborate. It’s too big, too personal. In the micro sense though, the minute by minute version, sustainability is my constant invisible friend egging me on. Every day, she never lets up. Sometimes I have to talk her down. But not often. I’m hoping one day she’ll just bugger off because I’ve become her. I can’t see that happening anytime soon.
My biggest issue with sustainability is the word – I don’t like it much. It’s a clunky, unattractive thing with a local council vibe to it that reeks of do-goodism. Plus, it’s been hijacked by the greenwash brigade and who here wants to ride on that bus? Not me.
I’ve been determined from the get-go NOT to use sustainable in the title of this blog. For all the reasons above. Clearly I’ve bowed on that one, all the way to the bitumen and then sideways at a rather odd angle, towards that gorgeously weird little film starring Bill Murray – The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. Now there’s a title that rolls beautifully off the tongue, the first three words of it at least.
The Life Sustainable – not such an easy tongue roll.
So, I’ve surrendered to the S word, in the lower case sense of it, and I’m fine with that. Domain name was up for grabs, I pressed the button, here I am.
Now that I’ve landed I’m not so sure what I’m doing here. My adventures in sustainability started, I think, around 6 years ago. When I did a weekend permaculture course in Wollongong. At the time I was desperate to give up my Life Academic, was trying to get to the bottom of my Life Unwell and all the while sitting in the discomfort of a Life Uncertain. That last one seems to be a pesky, ongoing thing.
Uncertainty and sustainability are the oddest of friends and they’ve been steering me off in all directions for some time now.
This blog is the latest collaboration between the three of us. The loose plan here is to simply conjure up some words, now and again, just see what happens. Attempts will be made to link sustainability to just about any subject matter I choose. Because, honestly, what can’t be considered from the perspective of supporting ourselves and the planet into the future? Nothing. Certainly not since the latest IPCC report which has terrorised a great many of us. As it should.
I’m handwriting the first draft of this post far from terror with a sightline that skips through native bush, over the Great Ocean Road and far out across Bass Strait. Life as it exists in this moment is certainly aquatic, at least from afar. I have the feeling that anything is possible and my fountain pen is chewing up an empty page. Nothing like a beer and an ocean view to get things rolling.
And so it starts. Me writing about small s sustainability from the irony of my big picture unsustainable life.