Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Michael Pollan live at the Schnitz

The Wife and I saw Michael Pollan speak at The Schnitz last night, and really enjoyed it.

As I was trying to describe the talk to T. when we got home, it was almost Pollan's attitude more than the information that I appreciated the most. He's of course very well read about his subject matter (for those of you who haven't heard of him, the subject matter is food, and all the myriad implications around our decisions about food), but he doesn't present at all as someone defeated by the enormity of some of the problems he's exposing. He very much conveyed the sense that any of the problems lined out during the talk were not too large to deal with, they were conceptually graspable, and very much available for positive change.

His positivism wasn't pie-in-the-sky, either. He was realistic in his assessment about, for instance, the strength of the agri business lobby in Washington and its effect on the policy decisions of the Obama administration. But then turned around and gave examples of public movements and outcry creating the political will to get large tasks done.

Here is a video in which Pollan covers some of the same subject matter as he did last night at the Authors@Google series of lectures. Maybe you have the time to sit down with him for a bit, I think it's worth it.

Enjoy learning and being inspired about the important things,