Well, I had my Archaeology midterm today as well as a midterm paper due (though it's not officially due until Thursday). Proud to say I had it all printed out and ready to turn in at 4:15 am today. Class was at 2:00 pm. I think I did pretty well... Will know in a few days.
After I came home, I went out riding my bike. I got about 2.5 miles from the house and got to a treacherous bit of sidewalk. Live oaks on both sides within inches of the edge of the side walk, lots of roots tearing up the surface, about a 2 - 3 inch drop from the cement on both sides to the ground, and the sidewalk wove back and forth very quickly... Well, I slowed down hoping that would make it okay to get past it, but my front tire hit a weird bump, slipped off the edge of the cement and bam! I hit a tree. My basket is all messed up, and I've got scratches all over the left side of my face and left arm from wrist to elbow... And there's possibly a bruise developing from the side of my knee almost down to my ankle on my right leg. I saw stars... for a second I just hugged the tree and wondered if I had broke my jaw. I didn't, thank goodness. Odd thing is there isn't a scratch on the bike. And then I had to ride 2.5 miles back home. It sucked.
But then, I remembered that Jeff Corwin, of Animal Channel fame, was going to be speaking at USF this evening at 7pm, so I cleaned up, hurried to eat dinner and headed back to school. The lecture was held in the Special Events hall this time instead of the ballroom... a good call 'cause there were hundreds and hundreds of people there. A lot of kids, some looked as young as 3 or 4 too. I was surprised. Jeff talked about his travels and the things he's learned over the last ten years since he started doing tv. He said that the best advice he could give, before anyone could ask, was to find something you love and find a way to make a living off it. He said he decided he wanted to do what he does since he was 6 years old and got bit by garter snake in his grandmother's backyard... and he decided on tv specifically when, having just finished his undergrad work, he was asked by a documentary crew to show them around Bolivia, which he knew like the back of his hand practically because of all the work he'd done there and time he'd spent. He got lucky. It only took him 4 years of persistence and tenacity to land a show on Disney. The rest is history.
He was really nice, and funny, and patient with the little kids, and the whole point of his lecture was to raise awareness of species that are truly endangered... Not the fuzzy, cuddly ones that everyone likes, like pandas, but rather the ones that a lot of people wouldn't mind killing themselves cause they're afraid of them or think they're a nuisance, such as rattlesnakes in the southwestern US.
He's also quite upset, and rightly so, about the "reworking" of the Endangered Species Act. If you haven't already, read up on what the distinguished gentleman from California, Richard Pombo, has done. Here's his version: http://www.house.gov/Pombo/press/press2005/sept29_05.htm Really, it's a toothless excuse for a law and will allow developers and other rats to continue to endanger threatened and nearly extinct species (and this isn't the first time Pombo has, pardon my French, bent over for developers and self-serving "special interests."). Every environmentalist in the country knows this... but the vast majority of this country isn't caring about the environment right now. They're too distracted with the hurricane clean-up, and Iraq, and gays getting married, and their own problems... The environment is always there and yet not in their face, so they ignore it. And that really sucks of them. If you're one of those people, I suggest you get up and start writing your local newspapers, your elected officials, tell your friends and get people pissed about this so-called TESRA. Cause those 900 species still on the Endangered Species List was reduced by 4 last month because 4 species were officially acknowledged as having become extinct... gone forever, never to be seen on this good Earth again. And there will only be more, thanks to Pombo, TESRA, every single Congressmen who voted for it, everyone who supported them, and everyone who didn't fight against it with everything they felt they could do. The loss of those 900 species *will* be *their* fault, it will be on *their* heads, every one, and no one else's because when they were able to do *something*, *anything* to stop it, they made the selfish decision to pander or to be apathetic. And that's the simple truth.