This evening I feel grateful for having had the chance to meet Jerry Mander. He's the author of several books. He was in Sebastopol tonight to talk about his newest book, The Superferry Chronicles. It's a tale of community action taken against an anti-community project, a huge 40 mph ferry that operates now between Oahu and Maui. The ferry has proven lethal to the humpback whales and other marine life that live in the waters it navigates. It serves, too, as a prototype for military vessels coveted by the US Navy. It's quite a story!
But the real reason I ventured into town this evening had roots extending back to a time when I had no gray hair, no kids, and no clear idea about how to live life well.
More than 30 years ago, Jerry wrote a book called Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television. I bought the book and skimmed it. While I'm aware that other books written since then make stronger and more persuasive criticisms of television and its effect on society, Jerry's book solidified my nascent intention to banish television from my home. Jerry's book helped me renounce the tube. I've never regretted it.
I'm sometimes asked for advice for living, you know, questions like, "How did you raise two such wonderful kids?" If I think it best to answer in just two words I'll probably respond by saying,
And I mean it quite sincerely.
I'm grateful tonight for the opportunity to shake the hand and thank in person Jerry Mander. He made a contribution to my life. Thank you, Jerry!