I love burning wood--for so many reasons. It supports the Maine economy. It takes work, and I love work. It is a different type of heat--it just seems more "full" and penetrating than forced hot air or baseboard. I feel like I have earned the warmth it brings to my house, since I have stacked (and, before we had kids) and split it all. Also, any time I dont need to be reliant on any foreign oil I feel really good about myself. Plus, wood is a renewable resource.
I have often written about wood on this blog: From what type of hardwoods are indicative of what type of romantic relationships...to how all able bodied people who receive heating assistance from the state should have high efficiency wood stoves installed. And, lately, another wood-idea has been circulating around my messed up head. And it has to do with highways in Maine....
Route 95, according to my research, from Kittery to the Canadian border, is 303 miles long. Now, granted, for the first 30 miles or so, when you are in southern Maine (or NORTH Mass, as I call it) there is little separating the north and southbound lanes...maybe a narrow swath of land separating the two sides. However, once you get above Portland, for the most part, you have pretty modest areas of land--in some places probably 50 yards wide--of...well....'woods. Even if only one hundred of the three hundred miles had these areas of land separating the north and southbound lanes, if you do the math, it comes out to almost EIGHTY MILLION FEET of woods. Woods, I might add, that are (and I feel bad saying this, because I am all for wildlife and conservation and stuff...) completely USELESS. People cant hunt or ATV or hike or fish there. We dont WANT wildlife there, since they are apt to cause accidents, etc. So what do the woods do? Just sit there? Why? Let's harvest some of this wood, responsibly, and sell it in order to boost revenue that Maine simply does NOT HAVE ANYMORE.
And before all the environmental hippies get all up in arms about this, I will add that I have I have learned, over the past few years, just how resilient forests are in 'coming back' to life--if the woods-areas are selectively cut, most folks would hardly know any trees were missing. Plus, let's not forget,, the trees grow back! WHY we are not doing this is beyond me: It is a win/win situation, since it touches upon all the hot issues (no pun intended) right now: Locally grown and produced goods....boosting local economy....grassroots activism....renewable energy....non-reliance on foreign oil....No Child Left Behind (okay...that one is a stretch....)....and....well....just being awesome.
orrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr......you could hide free food and money all along the 303 mile section....have people try to find it and run back across the three laned highway in under 5 minutes without getting killed....and then broadcast it on HULU. Gameshow, even. And stuff.
Vote for me.