DIRT! is a film that celebrates the soil and illustrates its importance: environmentally, economically, socially and politically.
Whether you grew up with trees and dirt, like I did, or surrounded by concrete and the occasional patch of grass, we are all connected to dirt. Animals, humans, planets, stars, and dirt are all made of the same element. We are literally a part of the land and it is a part of us.
Which is why I can feel the falling of trees in rainforests. This is why when I see images of men with chain saws killing and maiming the earth, I see that as a call to war. When I see the bodies of the dead being carted away to become SkyMall magazines, Fingerhut catalogs, junk mail, and coupons to send to “Current Resident” or “Box Holder” I am disgusted and amazed that this can still happen. I am angry that this is still a thing: people are willing to cut, slash, burn and ruin the soil for temporary farming areas; that in order to compete with bigger businesses, in order to survive, farmers in Brazil are forced to join in this process. I am angry that we can know of the rainforests importance, know that there are undiscovered species of plants inside of them that could potentially help the world out, and yet still be willing to sacrifice those possibilities for a temporary win.
I can’t justify that. I can’t justify not using recyclable bags, not keeping a box for recycling and not buying what I can locally. That’s where it’s at—being aware globally but acting locally: doing the best you can.
That is what DIRT! teaches. “What we have destroyed, we can heal.”
I never used to carry around a pack of Kleenexes, never used to keep the windows closed or take pills daily. Somewhere, I got disconnected and my system reversed. Instead of at school–indoors and stifled by recycled air–my allergies flared up outside. But once again, I’ve learned to sleep with my windows open and let the overhead fan recycle help circulate all that air. I began to eat differently, to get my food from people who connected with the land and cared about what they made and now I’m back to where I was.
I do the best I can, because if you remember:
To give anything less than your best is to waste the gift.
The Sustainable Table–“Eat Seasonal, Shop Local”: just type in your state and the time of year and they’ll instantly pull up a list of vegetables that are in season in your area. Great guide for shopping at Farmer’s Markets.
Dirt: for information on hosting your own screening of the film DIRT!