As of today, I have enjoyed or endured 3,924 weeks of life on Earth. That means that World War II was still in the future when I was born and telephones were bulky black objects that enabled you to talk to an operator who would connect you to another phone somewhere in order to speak to another person in your own area.
Long distance calls – city to city – cost extra. And that was it for phone service.
Nuclear fission was discovered the previous year.
The year before that, Guy Callendar argued that CO2 greenhouse global warming was underway.
So I’ve lived through and observed very dangerous times, with both of these issues threatening human survival in a way that was unthinkable previously.
Along the way, I’ve learned a lot and slowly realized a fundamental purpose, which is to try to express what I’ve learned in a world that is now intensely connected, with the hope that my own experience and learning and understanding might be helpful to others in achieving the full potential of life and avoiding ridiculous calamity and having fun.
I was trained as a journalist and my first serious job was as a science writer. In that role, I immediately was fascinated by physics and continued to read and study about that until now.
The release of a book called “Beyond the Limits” in 1992 provided an epiphany for me that led to what has now been 23 years of work on sustainability, trying to understand the on/off switch for the catastrophic future envisioned in that book.
It turns out the way to begin to address all serious issues is to connect them to human quality of life in the present or near future.
That idea led to founding Houston Tomorrow, a nonprofit whose mission is to improve the quality of life of all the people of the Houston region.
Those two paths have made me an amateur unlicensed quasi-expert gadfly in the ideas surrounding the idea of the ephemeral cosmos, not to mention the ideas of urban planning, especially as they play out in Houston.
So the main threads on this website are Houston and the Cosmos, or Everything. But a third thread called Back Story is about the why of what I’m doing, as well as a random bunch of posts about things that amaze me and move me forward.
This is all difficult stuff, and I’ve tried to make it easy reading about complex ideas. I’m particularly eager to hear about mistakes I’m making and also about pathways I might follow to richen this whole thing.
NOTE TO ARTISTS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS: Whenever I have found a great image that tells the story I’m working on, I search for a source of that image, and almost never can I find one. So I try to link to the place I found the image, at least. If I have used your work without attribution, please let me know and I will correct that and link to your page.
-David Crossley, August 11, 2015