Posts Tagged ‘seven sins’

In my earlier post on ‘The Seven Sins, I looked at the seven sins from a personal standpoint, as a Green Girl Wannabe. This time, I want to revisit the infamous list, and explore its merits in regards to marketing strategy for the climate cause.

I find it interesting that my most viewed post is not one about deep strategic considerations, but a rather shallow one featuring Isabella Rossellini’s Green Porno videos about bugs’ sex . . . Similarly the Cassandra Peak Oil video collected over 20,000 views in less than three months on YouTube. There are also the ecosexuals, and the French ‘Velibataires‘. That should be enough to sell you on lust as a major driver for the climate fight!

Next is greed. Green is the new gold, as evident from the rush of capital into green startups, and corporations’ attempts to instill some green-ness into their products. Greed may be what is going to save us in the end.

Sloth means you’ve got to give people sustainable solutions that are going to make their life easier, not more complicated. The less work, the better.

Envy is at work when I’ve got a new green product that is so much cooler than its brown alternative. The Prius comes close, but at a price.

Pride as in ‘green pride’ is not operating quite yet, but there may come a time when green will become an integral part of good citizen ethics. ‘Green Pride’ T-shirts anyone?

I have left out vengeance and gluttony out of the list, as I can’t quite see how to work these into ‘the cause’. What do you think?

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I want to discuss the ‘peak oil‘ video, referred to by Kyle in his comment yesterday. ‘Cassandra Peak Oil’ was released in December 2007 and was viewed 19,814 times. Not bad for ‘peak oil’ . . .

Kyle thinks this is a great example of the smart use of sex to sell green stuff. Is it? While there is no denying that the sex part gets people’s attention, I had my doubts. After all, what is the relevance of sex to peak oil? I put Prad to the test and asked him.

Is she trying to distract me?’ was his first reaction. His overall assessment: ‘Most guys who watch it are hoping she will take it all off, so they keep on watching. It was effective. Guys especially would not turn it off. But it’s a bit gimmicky, and too sensationalist.’

I did a quick analysis of the comments on YouTube. Reactions to the video, were mostly positive, two to one versus negative comments. Most people felt Cassandra did an excellent at calling people’s attention, and that she was a ‘smart, hot chick‘. As one commenter put it, ‘SEVEN DEADLY SINS, right on!’ Now ex-governor Spitzer should know . . .

Green Porno‘ with Isabella Rossellini, then ‘Cassandra Peak Oil‘, what’s next?

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As a green girl committed to confessing her daily sins, I thought it would be interesting to go down the list of the seven sins, and see which ones get me in trouble the most:


#1. Lust


A few days ago, the words Make Love, not War came to me in the midst of a walk. We are at war with the Earth. When will we start making love with it? We have lost our emotional connection with the Earth. I find it again, every time I go back home to my grandparents’ farm, in the Southwest of France. There, I have this incredible need to physically connect with the earth, to touch it and hold it in my hands. I have not gone back since the beginning of my mother’s illness two years ago, and I miss it terribly. La terre.


#2. Gluttony


Taken in its expanded version, as consuming more than one needs, I am definitely guilty of that one. I could live off what I already owns for years to come. Yet the thought of no longer being able to shop at my favorite spots – think Target, Anthropologie, H&M – triggers immediate withdrawal angst.


#3. Greed


Not giving into greed is another challenge. I live in Silicon Valley, where pretty much everyone I know is a millionaire, and working hard at gathering even more millions. The New York Times had an article on that very subject a few days ago. Closely linked to greed is the need to succeed, and to build some business venture of sorts. After years in dormancy, raising my children, I got the bug again, and am working hard at joining the startup bandwagon. I just came back from a lunch gathering for E2 (Environmental Entrepreneurs), and it was hard not to feel the rush, from all the potential opportunities.


#4. Sloth


Guilty there too. When it comes to practicing a green lifestyle, I can be incredibly lazy. I just love convenience, and always find a million of excuses for not making the extra effort. This morning again, I made the deliberate choice to spend an extra fifteen minutes writing in my blog, and driving to a meeting only a few blocks away, rather than forsaking the blog, and walking instead. Never mind the blog is all about trying to be green.


#5. Vengeance


I know this may seem kind of sick, but that is the truth. Sometimes, when I am angry, I literally take it on the Earth, and find an almost devious pleasure in ‘trashing’ small things that I know full well should be recycled. I am talking candy wrapper, not plastic bottle . . . Often in these moments, I get in touch with an energy that is much bigger than me, not just my personal anger. And I start thinking about all the other crimes that are being committed routinely, and on a much grander scale, against the Earth, all over the world.


# 6. Envy


Nothing comes to mind, for now, except maybe my desire to succeed, and to be yet another Silicon Valley success story. I have a hard time separating envy from greed. I can also come up with a lot of excuses for why I want so badly to be a part of the Silicon Valley gold rush. For a long time, I thought I was immune to the power of money. Years as a starving artist have changed my perspective. Money is not necessarily a bad thing. My dream is to make enough money to some day fund social and green ventures. In the mean time, I need to remain aware of all the pitfalls, and to be careful to walk the green talk.


# 7. Pride


I am old enough to no longer trust my ego completely. How pure are my motivations? I have these grandiose ideas of how I will help save the Earth. Ask me to stuff envelopes for an environmental cause, or to plant trees, or to be a good green steward at home, and you will find me a lot less enthused. I am a victim of the delusion that bigger ideas are better than a collection of small personal actions.


I like lists, they force me to clean house.

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