Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Olympics and Pollution


I watched the Olympics, which is a big deal because I do not typically watch TV. Not because I am too good for such mindless entertainment, but because I have 3 channels, 2 of which are fuzzy. I do pick up NBC, so for the past two weeks, I would get in my bed and watch rippling bodies compete. And it was really inspiring, as I lay in my bed.


I decided, though, that the inspiration meant nothing unless I actually did something about it, so on Sunday morning, the day of the closing ceremonies, I decided to go for a jog, the first in months.


I took a new route down to the river via the boardwalk that runs along Second Creek and under Neyland, right near the Three Rivers Rambler. I’ve been there before, but have never been so astounded as this time.

The creek, where it meets up with the Tennessee River, is full of trash. It is so horrifying that I felt unsafe even being above it. This is not the first time I’ve encountered Knoxville’s polluted creeks, but this is the first time I felt moved by it. I guess with all the inspiration of the Olympics inside me, I felt it was time to take some action, and that starts with asking some questions:


Where is this waste coming from? The river? Up the creek? From people littering? Is there anyone doing anything about it? How do you go about cleaning up trash from a toxic creek? Does anyone want to form a coalition?


Let’s put our rippling brains and bodies to good use.

16 comments:

Barbara said...

Hope you forwarded this picture to the Dept.. of Public Works or whatever dept. cleans this up. Unbelievable and uncalled for! There was a time in the 1970s that the river in Cleveland, OH was so polluted that it actually caught fire!

em said...

It's so gross and makes me angry. I run along there a lot and always get mad when I'm out there.

Pollution and Homelessness in Knoxville...why the hell isn't something being done!!?

The Pol said...

ok so lets figure out what to do.

first - the city manages that stuff i'm pretty sure so we can turn to parks and rec.

second - if we did something basic like starting to fish the stuff out and bagging it up I think the city would pick it up.

third - if we catch a disease i don't think the city would pay for it... oh well lets do it.

benjamin said...

remember on earth day when we ran into each other in downtown and I was taking pictures. i made a video slideshow that starts with beauty and slowly moves toward trash. the video ends with pictures of that exact spot on the boardwalk.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mOdguJbhLuw

so gross.

The Modern Gal said...

Wow, I used to jog down there when I was in school five or six years ago. It was bad then, but not nearly this bad.

I'm game for doing something about this. Is there a safe way to cleaning this stuff up on our own or is relying on the city the only chance we've got?

The Modern Gal said...

What about the Keep Knoxville Beautiful folks? Maybe they can help get the word out.

adam brimer said...

it reminds me of that trash compactor in "Star Wars: A New Hope"... you know, the one in the Death Star? I'm just waiting for an eyeball to pop up and spit R2-D2 out. whaaaaAAAAAaaaa!

i'm sure the Empire had their ways of cleaning up garbage, why can't we do something about it? i'm sure Boomsday won't help either.

adam brimer said...

and i'm a nerd.

Lo said...

let's not get to carried away with this folks. just wait until the rain clears up and washes it all downstream. then we don't have to worry about it at all! a wise engineer once told me that the solution to pollution is dilution.

ck said...

one thing's for sure, blasters won't work 'cause it's magnetically shielded! (cue stan and the pol to enthusiastically jump in)...and we're all nerds here.

seriously, I'm all for volunteering for good things that my taxes don't cover, but this isn't one of them. call the city.

adam brimer said...
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adam brimer said...
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Big B said...

how does one "call the city?"

Christine said...

To "call the city" dial 311 or visit http://www.cityofknoxville.org/311/default.asp

Mickey said...

First and third creeks are the same way. As far as I know, all that stuff comes from storm drains. Whatever gets tossed in the street ends up in the river eventually.

While we're at it, let's address that sign in Tyson park warning people to avoid contact with the water in Third Creek. Scary.

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