Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The Energizer Baby

Is it me, or is the government turning a blind eye to the obvious solution to our energy crisis? Last week members of all 50 states met in California for the first-ever Governors' Global Climate Summit/Weenie Roast (sponsored by the Rain Forest Pyromaniacs Guild and the National Smokestacks Union). At this summit/weenie roast, the governors discussed alternative methods of harvesting energy. They called for more ethanol in cars, more windmills on our nation's farms and fields, and more green beer on St. Patrick's Day. Our President-elect even addressed the conference, saying his administration plans to create millions of jobs through eco-friendly projects, and he will undo efforts by the current administration to build the world's largest chlorofluorocarbon-based air conditioner. Everyone cheered, patted themselves on the back and drove home in their Hummers without addressing another potential (and abundant) resource: baby power.

During the past five months I have come to discover that a baby has the ability to kick one million times a minute. Our little Kyle can go even twice as fast when he's on a device called the "bouncy seat," which rocks back and forth with every kick. It doesn't matter what time of day it is - once he's strapped in, he's often ready to go. On an average early morning, when adults have trouble walking to the coffee pot, Kyle kicks the equivalent of a marathon. In the evening, when the adults lie down after a tiring day of sitting at a computer, Kyle is still kicking away without showing any sign of fatigue. It's so much fun trying to get him to go to bed.

Unfortunately, all that energy is going to waste. Our bouncy seat is unable to harness all that kicking power, and I doubt its manufacturer has even tried to find a way to do it. I plan to send an angry letter to the seat's maker on behalf of all environmentalists. I'm sure all we need is a simple tweak to the design and we'd be able to use it to light the apartment for months.

Of course, bouncy seats are only part of the equation. Babies really don't need anything to get going, even before they learn to crawl or run. Our little guy is now flipping himself in the crib and doing more push-ups than a wise-cracking private at boot camp.

(Above: Kyle completes push-up #125)

Once again, an opportunity is missed. The governors at that summit/weenie roast might want to consider pushing for the development of children's clothing that will collect and store this energy in a device that parents can then plug into their homes for electricity. Sure, this piece of clothing might have a large battery pack and lots of wires, which could make snuggling a little more difficult... but isn't it worth it to not have to pay the electric company to run your toaster?

Each year, some 4 million babies are born United States, and yet not a single one of them is being used to free us from foreign oil. It makes you wonder whether the government is seriously seeking renewable energy. Four million babies can probably keep most of our cities bright at night. And just imagine what would happen if we gave them sugar! The possibilities are endless.

1 comment:

JoannaP said...

And all that money you'll save on your bills will go to buy their food and diapers. Excellent plan!