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Colorado Springs administrators think 100 years is old enough for local trees

Colorado Springs city administrators have announced they will have to cut down a number of 100-year-old trees in the historic downtown area, due they explain, to diminishing water access and the resultant risk of limbs falling, jeopardizing motorists. Rescuing the majestic trees is apparently beyond the city's budget, so they're on the chopping block, literally. The scenario reminds me of the fate of Pueblo's Old Monarch, a 388-year-old cottonwood which the city felled in 1883 because it didn't fit with the city fathers' street plan. Hundreds of residents tried to save Old Monarch, they petitioned, rallied and for a while they prevailed. You can read what happened on a brass plaque which now commemorates the site. I'll reprint it here. Interestingly, the narrative seems to celebrate Pueblo's treachery. "The day came, however, when the value of the tree in the middle of the main business street was challenged. In spite of 366 protesting citizens, the South Pueblo Council ordered it to be cut down.   Men hired by the Council approached the tree and informed the gathering crowd that they were only there to trim the branches. This, of course, was the news the protesters wanted to hear and soon dispersed. As soon as the crowd had gone, the Council sent orders to girdle the tree. Once that task was done all hope of saving "Old Monarch" was lost." To girdle a tree means to make a cut along the circumference deep enough to sever the half dozen rings which are still live conduits, effectively cutting off its nutrients. Taking a lesson I suppose, today's downtown residents can thwart Colorado Springs' move. For one, color over the orange marks which distinguish the trees to be culled. Better yet, stay the axe by marking every tree downtown with the same paint. Or of course, send a delegation to city hall and propose the obvious, that these trees should stay, they can grow to be many hundred years older, urge that proper effort be made. The City Council must be steward to Colorado Springs' resources, not merely their reaper.

The Toilet Paper Bears – A Fitting Analogy for once.

So, leave aside the notion that male bears tend to eat their offspring. It's a little too graphic for the anthropomorphists But one of their new themes is Poppa Bear and Little Bear in a rowboat fishing. Little Bear gets impatient. Then has the bright idea to drop a piece of the Overpriced-and-not-any-better-than-any-other-brand of toilet paper into the water.Which is so absorbent that it dries up the whole lake. All the fish are gasping for water to breathe, flopping around in their death throes. Somehow, in the insane popularity contest that passes for "awww, wook at the cute animals" the fish aren't given fake smiles, humanized eye placement and faces, and the other pond dwellers who are sometimes anthropomorphized, like the frogs, aren't represented. BUT... That's not the truly relevant part. It's part of the relevance though, that's why I included it. The fact is, though, in our Throw-Away Society, where everything including Human Beings is disposable, paper products are among the worst offenders. First they take out the native, healthy, sustained ecosystem forests and put in "better managed" forests where all the trees are planted at the same time, no underbrush to get in the way of the Organized, Efficient Harvesting of them when the Corporate Owners decide it's their turn to die, and the Corporatists who will no doubt object to this analogy are going to say "Why, oh why, can't we get all "our" workers organized like that, where they'll perform their jobs efficiently for our profit and then die off in an orderly manner, instead of being, you know, Human?" Of course the planting of tree-farms where forests used to be not only allows for the Dehumanized Workers and their more-valuable-to-the-company machines to access the "product" for maintenance and harvest, it also hastens erosion and provides no nutrition for the animals, either the Cute and Fuzzy winners of the Insane Popularity Contest, like the deer and the bears and the rabbits (Did you know there's actually been a recent extinction event, a species of RABBIT? It's true... you might think to yourself "Self, how does a species that breeds like, well, Rabbits, go extinct?") and the squirrels and chipmunks which are "good" animals, and the slugs, beetles, very large species of cockroach, vultures, rattlesnakes, worms, you know, the ones that are much harder to paint as Furry People, aren't normally eaten directly by people and it takes more than a couple of very quick and short sentences using only one-and-two-syllable words, to describe how they fit into the "food chain" far less the enormously complex and beautifully orchestrated Ecosystem. Then at the other end of the process (middle actually, the "profitable" output of it still has to be shipped, marketed and then "disposed of properly" whatever the hell THAT means) the process of shredding the once-living trees into pulp, instead of long fibers (remember, they're not aiming for quality, they're aiming for the Corporate Trifecta: Fast, Cheap and Disposable) then glued back together, pressed into paper and rolled

Nevada Avenue is losing its shade trees

COLORADO SPRINGS- Unless you ride the city buses which leave the downtown station, you may not have noticed the leafy shade is gone. A few years ago when urban improvement struck Tejon Street, merchants were able to dash outside a save their trees from the chainsaw. The trees which until recently offered shade to those waiting at the central bus station had no such protectors.

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