My old friend Laurene Von Klan, past head of friends of the River, then head of the Nature Museum, and currently living in LA reviving rivers there and working on her surfing skills,
well, 10 years ago she proposed that during big storm events we refrain from use of water that ends up in the sewer: yup! hold on dish washing, laundry, showers, even ... flushing. If five million people cooperated, delayed the urge for eight, 10, 12, 20 hours, we could avoid making the decision to allow untreated wastewater to enter the river system.
Today, this is MWRD policy! See press release.
Take it to heart. It is a small inconvenience, that, practiced by multitudes, could change the world.
Ready to swim!? I think I wrote about the very hopeful and forward looking conference that anticipates the regularization of places for swimming in the Chicago River. During non-storm interludes, the river settles, the water clears, the smell diminishes, and the bacteriological assessment of this water says: safe to swim. Obviously there are other factors that preclude the impulse to plunge,
that did not stop....
... Two burglars that took the plunge to avoid capture by police after crashing a stolen car.
Can you imagine the discussion:
"Dude, they're coming. I read an article that said it's alright to swim in the river ..."
A half hour later they were dragged out.
Health results pending.
Lanyon at Sultzer
25 years ago Waters School
and Riverbank Neighbors hooked up with Richard Lanyon,
then Superintendant of the Water Reclamation District,
to assume management of the riverbank from Berteau to Montrose.
Dick became a fast friend,
he is an alumni of Waters Elementary School!!!,
a progressive voice in leadership of this vast,
serious, important and ground-breaking institution.
Dick retired some years ago but continues to research, write, publish, and advocate for the River.
On Wednesday night, (tomorrow) at 7:00 p.m.
he will be presenting at Sulzer Library about the advent of the modern CAWS (Chicago Area Waterways System) from the original vast, diverse, wetland that was post glacial Chicago.
The forecast for tomorrow's Garden night is cold and rainy.
Good to keep in mind that we changed our "opening" day for gardening when daylight savings time changed, two, three, four, five years ago,
to take advantage of the extra hour of light.
Maybe we should have waited for May?
Anyway, it's not surprising that the work nights have been rained out or called off.
That's early Spring.
So tomorrow night,
some of us might go to the garden,
but then go to the Library to honor Richard Lanyon,
his research and curiosity,
and our very fruitful relationship over the past 20+ years.