A CONCERNED CITIZEN SPEAKS OUT ON THE ENERGY CRISIS
As I sat waiting in a gas line, it occurred to me that there has been a sad lack of creative public response to the energy crisis. So I began my own list of energy saving propositions. I sent them to James Schlesinger, but he never replied. So I sent them to this magazine.
1. Use creative sympathy tactics in beating gas lines. Park your car two blocks from the station and get into a wheelchair with a ten-gallon gas can. Or let your enterprising eight-year-old stand in line with a lawn mower and gas can. Or, if female, wear a stuffed maternity dress and tell the attendant: "I either need gas or I need hot water and newspapers."
2. Children are an unlimited source of energy. We must harness that valuable resource. It could be most efficiently harnessed by designing playground equipment to transform toddler power into usable power. For example, the traditional playground merry-go-round should be designed with an electric generator in the center.
3. Water bills soar in summer. At night, hook up your hose to your neighbors’ faucet. Fill your tub, ice trays, and pots and pans.
4. Air conditioning is the energy bane of summer, and children in particular become fussy about keeping cool. Keep the children’s T-shirts in the freezer. Whenever they complain, have them put on a fresh frozen T-shirt - good for two hours.
5. The entire gasoline program should be turned over to the Catholic Church. Guilt is an excellent weapon in the energy war, and who knows more about guilt than a Catholic priest? "Repent, my child. . . sin no more. Six Hail Marys and ride in a carpool for a week."
6. Our Governor has said that during the summer, the business world should go without coats and ties. This is a half-measure; instead, we must wear only ties. The neck-tie is a vital instrument of business and, worn alone, is extremely cool. Because much hierarchical fashion status will be lost with the departure of coat and shirt, each tie should be emblazoned with its price so you’ll know if you’re talking to a successful person or not.
7. Cooking wastes a greatdeal of energy, first toheat the food and then to coolthe kitchen. It should be doneelsewhere whenever possible.For example, leftovers could bewarmed in the back window ofyour car.
8. Salespeople should plan meetings with their clients next to the frozen food counter at a convenient grocery store, thereby saving office cooling costs. And at the end of the meeting, you can purchase two boxes of frozen lima beans and wear them inside your shirt on the ride home.
9. One of the most unnecessary usurpers of energy is the elevator. We must encourage the use of stairs. This could be done in down-town office buildings by posting new office rumors in the stairwell each day.
10. Use subterfuge to save gas line time. Before the sun comes up, plant a sign near your neighborhood station that says "Transsexuals Only." You may be the first in line. Dress stunningly.