Shed a Single Tear

In which we all get back to our normal lives

Last Wednesday marked the 39th anniversary of Earth Day, the day that the world celebrates its collective guilt and happily does its brief penance. And that was all fine and good for Wednesday. By Friday, however, it was about time to return to our default settings. And if the earth can't absorb the stuff we produce without complaint or apocalyptic temperature changes, so be it. Civilization must move forward. And, more importantly, vendettas must be appeased, as an East Knoxville woman was recently reminded. The woman had been receiving threatening phone calls and text messages from an acquaintance for some time. She hadn't thought much about it—as she didn't really know why it was going on—nor had she reported it. She decided to charge the man with harassment, though, when, on the afternoon of April 24, 36 hours after the last hybrid car parade gently whirred off the streets for another year, she looked out her kitchen window to find the man spreading garbage all over the front of her lawn.

Merri Shaffer contributed to this report