Issue 23 : 30 May2008  

Hello %$firstname$%

Sorry I’ve been away a while. I’m back. And I’m happy! Read on to fnd out why...

In this issue:

Stupid is clever: launch of new must-see film
Thank you sir: read what Jonathon Porritt has to say about me
Risk and reward: it’s all relative
Mission Possible: water way to make a difference

The Age of Stupid

 “I’ve got the sweetest hangover I don’t wanna get over,”
Diana Ross

It’s ‘the morning after’ as I write this. Yesterday I had the huge privilege of attending a funders' premiere of the movie The Age of Stupid. Today I’m feeling curiously lifted and liberated, in ways I can’t explain. A bit like a hangover in reverse. The head hurt yesterday. The high came later.

Don’t get me wrong, the film didn’t cheer me up. It was deeply disturbing (the situation is deeply disturbing). It gave no easy answers (there are no easy answers). It didn’t try to change me (that’s my job). It didn’t ease my guilt (I didn’t want it to). It made the basic connections simple (everything is connected). It told its truth (my truth too). 

Regular readers will recall how I became a ‘movie investor’ (darling!) after falling in love with the concept of The Age of Stupid back in December at Be The Change 2007. (No, there’s not that much money in carbon coaching. The movie is ‘crowd funded’ – lots of people invest a little, instead of a few people investing a lot.)

In other words, I have a small vested interest in the film being a big success. And a massive vested interest – my children – in it being an evolutionary success. How cute is that!

Anyway, fortunately I’m aware that nothing I can say here will do the movie experience any justice, so I’ll stop there. One of my all time heroes, actor Pete Postlethwaite, plays the lead role and is captivating. Suffice to say it is probably the best movie in the world. Seriously.

Pete PostlethwaiteWork on the final version of the movie is almost complete. Keep track of developments – and contribute funds – via The Age of Stupid website:

If you're quick, you may also be able to attend a preview screening being arranged for the independent journalists' organisation, the Frontline Club.


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The buzz... getting louder with everyone starting to ‘bee the change’.

Before, when people asked my wife what I did for a living, and she struggled to explain, the reaction was often a quizzical or concerned “Oh, how interesting. Are you okay with that?”. The reaction is now “Your husband must be doing well!”.

I’m being invited to speak at amazing events. I’ve been helping some wonderful people – true leaders – such as Jonathon Porritt and Heston Blumenthal, I’m doing a lot of speed coaching at corporate events, and I’m advising a popular TV series. I’ve been on the radio, and chaired conference panels. I’m turning down posh job offers back in corporate-ville, and local schools are asking me to talk to the children about my job!

“It can’t be easy dealing with old lags like me (who like to think they know more than they do!) but it was great to have Dave push us firmly along in the right direction,"
Sir Jonathon Porritt, 5 May 2008

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A risky business

One way and another I’m busier than ever. Sure, the economy is hitting the stops, and that’s scary, but it’s not as scary as the whole planet going off the rails. Some people say it’s risky giving up your job. Some say it’s risky investing everything in renewable energy or some weird movie. Some say it’s risky telling the prime minister to get in carbon shape or go.

But risk is relative. And relative to the imminent planetary ‘game over’ neon sign that’s starting to flicker above our children’s heads, just as they are preparing for a full life ahead... now that’s what you call risk!

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Carbon2Share articleWhat would Gandhi do?

I’m chuffed that Colin Challen MP, chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Climate Change, chose to print a piece of mine on C&C in his newsletter Carbon2Share.

Download the article

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Mission Possible – eau de joy

I am s’eau excited about this month’s challenge. For some of you it will be easy peasy lemon squeezy but for some it will still be a surprisingly big ask.

Tap water.

Next time you’re in a restaurant with friends, politely ask for tap water. Even if they’re posh friends, it’s a smart restaurant and someone else is paying. Actually, no – especially then.

Doing this piece of theatre well isn’t quite as easy as it sounds.

Practice asking seductively, confidently, lovingly. Smile enigmatically, keep eye contact, and ask for some nice tap water to go with the delicious food. Savour the taste when it comes. Avoid the temptation to say a word about your choice. Not a word.

They already kn’eau.

Enjoy every drop. Plainly be happy (don’t worry, you will be).

They’ll all want some of what you’re drinking.


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Put your weight into it

My final thought is reserved for those of you not having such a good day as you read this. It’s easy to let the mind play tricks on us. I know.

You may recall I mentioned before that the average UK citizen dumps 150 times their body weight in CO2 every year. That’s some ‘air fill’ dump. Can you smell that?

So here’s a bit of fun and a visualisation for your entire body:

Imagine you’re holding a big rope, like the one in a tug of war. You’re standing at the rear of the Titanic, with that iceberg dead ahead.

Your entire family is on board. All your friends, all your family, all your loved ones.

Someone has somehow managed to loop the big rope all the way around another huge iceberg, just behind you, and to one side of the ship. The rope affords you, and a large group of people next to you on deck, the option of tugging on it, but realistically the chance of slowing the boat or influencing its course one iota is very slim.

In the Captain’s lounge a conference has been called to decide the best option. From the deck you can hear the shouts, the anguish, the exasperation, the words...
You are small and neither fit nor muscular, but you decide to pull anyway, for the hell of it.

You are chuffed when the person next to you joins in – also for the hell of it.
But for an age it seems like futility, aches and ridicule.

Then several deep voices behind you call out with purpose

“We are going to turn this ship if it kills us...”

You know what to do.

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Until soon

Dave Hampton
The Carbon Coach


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