The wait has been excruciating. Oil has been gushing beneath our Gulf nonstop for 87 days, while the engineers of BP have tried one iffy technique after another to stop it. This day has brought the first encouraging sign, and we are now waiting to see if it holds. We are emotionally exhausted and afraid to hope. Huffington Post has an online opinion poll today about whether the oil geyser has really stopped for good, and the results so far are 50/50.
Waiting is hard, when the outcome is desperately important. The world may feel different tomorrow, if this really is the beginning of the end of this disaster. In the meantime, we nurture our spirits by sending good thoughts to the environmentalists who are gently scooping up sea turtle eggs from their nests in the warm Gulf sand, and transporting them to the Atlantic coast of Florida. We do not yet begin to know how this disaster has changed our ecology. In the meantime, we are looking to musicians to begin to give voice to our heartache. Drew Landry, who catches crawfish for a living, brought his guitar to the public meeting of the Oil Spill Commission, and the YouTube clip of his moment singing truth to power has gone viral.
In the meantime, Louisiana addresses crisis with beer. We are waiting for the first delivery of Abita SOS, which will generate revenue for Gulf coast restoration, much as Restoration Ale did in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. The meantime is brief and poignant. The cleanup will be a marathon. There will be time enough for anger and litigation, and commentary on the lure of jobs on oil rigs, and green technology, and our excessive love of motorcars, and the casual attention to the stewardship of the earth by those who drilled deep, without a backup plan.
In the meantime, we can hope that this is a big enough environmental crisis to transcend partisan thinking. May this oil spill teach us something about ourselves. Down below, may the silence hold.