Monday, February 2, 2009

Doug Fine at the Chicago Cultural Center!

Come join me at the Chicago Cultural Center on Feb 20th to hear Doug Fine's hilarious yet informative talk and slide show on how to live a sustainable, "off-the-grid" lifestyle while keeping your "Western lifestyle" intact!

I am so excited that Doug will be coming in to do this speaking engagement for us this month, and I hope you can come! In the meantime, check out his great read, Farewell My Subaru (which I got from the library, but since he'll be selling the book at the event, I might be able to get my own copy!), and his web site.

Here's what Doug has to say about the event:

FAREWELL, MY SUBARU: With Humor Rather Than Fear, Author and U.S. National Public Radio Adventurer Doug Fine Shows How Anyone Can Become (Nearly) Petroleum-Free In One Year:

As I travel around the world, talking to audiences about how anyone can get petroleum out of his or her life without giving up any Digital Age comforts (not even car!), I’m often surprised by how difficult folks (and corporations) imagine their transition to sustainable living (and business) would be. Many believe that in some magical future we, as busy modern humans, will develop the technology to live comfortably and in a sustainable manner.

In my 90-minute slide show and talk based on Farewell, My Subaru, I use humor (including my many initial mistakes), rather than fear, to show audiences how anyone can move seamlessly to sustainability, through solar power, vegetable oil-powered autos and a sustainable diet. The message in this live event, as in the book, is, "If this guy can do it, anyone can." After all, when I started, coyotes attacked my chickens, my solar panels nearly electrocuted me, and my vegetable oil exhaust gave me a bad case of the munchies. And yet here I am, a year down the road, with upwards of 90% of fossil fuels out of my life. And I've given up none of my appliances, including washing machine, laptop, and, possibly most important of all, booming stereo sub-woofers.

As I've been doing around the world at institutions ranging from the National Geographic Society to Merrill Lynch, this event, with slides, hysterical story-telling and readingws from Farewell, My Subaru, shows how a regular guy can actually get oil-free, today. All without giving up his “Western lifestyle” or getting eaten by a mountain lion. I simply made it sustainable, without any special skills at the start. This very funny, inspiring and informative talk is followed by an interactive Q&A, as audiences are almost always inspired to ask questions about how they might get started on a carbon-neutral lifestyle, whether at the personal or corporate level. This event is no staid reading. Think "Green Stand-up" rather than a boring or scary melting-ice-sheet talk. Because we all realize that a major societal retrofit geared to sustainability is crucial for the future of the species.

Farewell, My Subaru has been covered everywhere from the New York Times to the Tonight Show with Jay Leno (info: Doug Fine's continuing blog of carbon-neutral misadventures, at, also has a short film about the book, and samples of Fine's NPR work and print journalism from five continents.

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