A big theme in the new book will be vision. What do we see when we look down? I begin the book with the fact that we spend 90% of our time inside, and when we do go outside and look down so many of us see concrete, pavement, or asphalt. We are literally separated from the natural ground, and there are physical, psychological, and even spiritual costs to this separation (all of which I will explore!)
But this literal separation is also symbolic of our separation from so many other grounds. For example, where does our food, water, and energy come from? How much do we know about what happened--and what is happening--to grounds that, because they are out of our sight they are also not in our thinking? For the new book I've tried to find fascinating grounds that maybe we aren't thinking of, or haven't been to, or have forgotten. Here are a few more.
I recently decided to take a few days and drive from Minneapolis up to the Bakken oil fields of western North Dakota. This is where oil and gas exploration has completely taken over. If you don't believe it, just google "Bakken at night" and you'll see the view from space of the flaring gas wells lighting up the sky as brightly as the nearest cities (Minneapolis, Chicago). But to see it on the ground is something crazy. Here's a good example, where I was taking a movie of a fracking station when two of the gazillion trucks on the highways here drove by.