The source: I got an email from my charming friend Caitlin.
The idea: Turn off your lights for one hour tonight during your local 8pm hour. Talk to your kid about conserving energy and make them more aware of wasting resources. Also talk to them about what people did before they had electricity to "enlighten" them.
The web site: http://www.earthhour.org/ The site may be down in parts -- Google blacked out and linked to them from the main Google page today so... they're getting a lot of traffic.
The sour taste in my mouth: Al Gore, Pat Robertson and Al Sharpton were here in town this week filming a commercial that's part of a new $300 million ad campaign where unlikely opposites are paired to promote environmental awareness. As in... even Pat Robertson and Al Sharpton can agree that whales are nice. To me, this is annoying. If I had given Al Gore $100, I would be annoyed that he spent it on paying famous people to stand on a beach and shake hands. I suppose it's all very fine but something about it irritated me.
Having said that: As a follow-up to our lesson about protesting, we will turn out our lights and talk about electricity tonight. It doesn't cost anything, it doesn't involve celebrities, and if it helps Benny remember to turn off his light before he goes to sleep, it'll be a plus for us. I'm also going to have Benny blog about things to do that don't involve electricity. Falling asleep with a book in your hand is a family ailment. I'm not sure Earth Hour can fix it. Did I say ailment? I meant legacy.
Disclaimer: I love electricity. I love our TV and our zillion computers. I love electric lights and the oven and blender and even the vacuum cleaner, or the fact that we have one. I especially love my new electronic recording equipment. But I will not be using it during Earth Hour.