Sunday, May 5, 2013

I Used to Hate Tomatoes and Mining

I did. I used to hate tomatoes except if they were mixed in dishes, chilli paste, and were not wholly visible. They really had to be destroyed in the dish and on the face of the planet. They were squishy, mildly sour, and had that weird taste. I despised them.

Until, I had a year in Australia and had to cook a lot of my own food. I’m not much of a cook, but I’ve seen that a lot of cooks like to use tomatoes. Seems like it adds taste, texture, and color to food. Instantly. Considering it was an easy way out to make good food, I followed their ways. For no particular reason, I fell in love with cherry tomatoes. I could eat them raw, anytime, anywhere. And I’m not sure why. I just love them. Then I started to fall in love with all sorts of tomatoes. 

Which goes to show, opinions can change, it just takes that waking moment to change it. And it’s alright.

I hate mining. Studying Biology triggered a nerve in me that made me realize how much I love living things and hate actions that cause the death of them. Mining included. I hated my lecturers for leaving classes and taking up projects in mining companies (usually rehabilitation ones). I hated companies that dump their waste and be irresponsible about them. I even got into fights with the old man just because he used to work at the mining department for the government. I used to have loud debates which ended in him with a high pitch tone saying I’m stupid and know nothing about it. I would get furious and dared him to continue the argument. He would just tisk. My mother would frown in the corner hoping it will end soon so she could go back watching her favorite soaps without distractions. 

As I’ve been in the mining business, I’ve come to learn a lot about the mining industry. My father was right. I knew too little about it to say anything. I’ve learned how it’s a high risk business, how it takes lives of nature and humans, how the process is super complicated, and how  it has immensely influenced our convenient daily lives. Everything we use in our daily lives is connected to mining (and oil, for we are an oil generation). I've learned that I need mining and enjoy what it brings to my life. 

I still hate mining. I still think that mining is a very destructive industry. Science has helped us fix many of its pot holes but the rate of our knowledge can catch up to the industry’s demand and its environmental impact,  let alone the law. But I have changed my mind. 

As much as I hate it, I hate people that take mining for granted. OK, maybe hate it too strong of a word. I dislike them on the surface. Not many people appreciate the complexity of mining and the consequence of taking resources from the ground to then applying it into our consumer goods. We consume so many things (related to mining or not) which eventually comes back to the amount of resources we need. By that, we need a lot of resources! I’m sad of the fact that people have to fight each other on the field for a wasteful consuming behavior. I’m disappointed in people that are proud to work in mining without realizing the damage they make. I don’t like people that blindly hate mining without argument but still living with their convenient lives.

I’ve changed my mind. And it’s alright. 

Having said that, I also have to note that it’s alright to change your/my mind. It’s a consequence of learning something. I, too, have to respect people that change their minds.