Friday, June 12, 2009

Ryan Newman Appleseed?

You might think that green living and fast racing don't go together. But Ryan "Rocket Man" Newman would beg to disagree.

Newman took part in a tree planting ceremony today at Michigan International Speedway as part of the kickoff for the "NASCAR Green Clean Air" initiative. And if Newman had his way, the rest of NASCAR nation would pay more attention to green living and environmental conservation.

“There’s nothing to be skeptical about. It’s something that we need to do," Newman said. "Johnny Appleseed came by a long time ago and dropped a bunch of seeds off and we need to follow his pattern."

Although I'm not planning to trek barefoot across the wilderness with a mush pot for a hat, I do think Newman has a point. I've seen what has happened to my native state in the last dozen years. And it would indeed be a step in the right direction if more Florida contractors would practice responsible development instead of razing everything with roots just to build another strip mall.

But it's not just about planting trees. As Ryan Newman told the media today, there are multiple ways for regular joes to make a big impact on the world we live in.

"We can talk about recycle and we can talk about drilling holes in tires and we can talk about planting trees and what we do with the water and things like that," Newman said. "Everybody has to help out. It’s not just NASCAR. It’s the fans and it’s the people. It’s you guys. Everybody has to help out in respect to this to make a difference.

John Chapman, aka Johnny Appleseed, would be proud.

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