According to Sam and Jim Commenting on things that irk us off, make us laugh out loud or just seem too weird too believe According to Sam and Jim: The True Course of Water

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The True Course of Water

Water, water, everywhere. But not a drop can we spare.

Sam and I just made that saying up. At least we think we did. It’s really hard to be original these days, but we try. Anyway, the subject of today’s blog posting is water. You know the wet stuff? Agua?

I have been researching water facts for my new book, Death of a Ditch Rider, and have decided water is a pretty deep subject when you really think about it.

Water reportedly covers nearly 71% of the Earth’s surface. But only 2.5 to 3% of that precious liquid is fresh water that can be used for drinking purposes or for irrigation of crops.

In America, we have been told for years that we should drink eight, 8-ounce glasses of water a day or about 1.9 liters per person. But the Institute of Medicine’s latest recommendations now state that men should aim for 3 liters or about 13 eight-ounce glasses of fluids per day, while women should strive for 2.2 liters or around 9 glasses, daily. A person may need more in warm weather or if she or he exercises regularly. Do you suppose the thirsty people in Third-World countries adhere to these standards?

Unfortunately, the world’s population is growing and growing and growing - sort of like the Energizer Bunny gone nuts., too many people are trying to kill that rabbit! According to the 2011 World Population Data Sheet, produced by the Population Reference Bureau, global population was projected to reach 7 billion in 2011, just 12 years after reaching 6 billion in 1999. Today's world population is double the population in 1967. While the overall growth rate has slowed, the population is still growing, and growth rates in some countries show little if any decline.

That’s a lot of thirsty people.

Sam and I don’t like to be alarmists and we tend to dismiss doomsday scenarios, but that kind of statistic sure twists our paws.

An average person in the U.S uses about 123 gallons (466 liters) of water daily. A shower uses 15 - 30 gallons. Just brushing your teeth can use 1-2 gallons. Shaving with the water running uses 10 - 15 gallons. Washing dishes by hand can consume 20 gallons, but doing them in the dishwasher only consumes 9 - 12 gallons (I told Kathleen!). Flushing the toilet requires 5 - 7 gallons per ka-floosh (boy, and I’m often a three-flusher!).

But here’s at least one good water statistic: coffee consumed in North America and Europe accounts for about a third of the water consumed in those countries, which certainly makes sense to Sam and me. thing to remember here is that all fluids count toward the daily total. The average coffee cup size is about 9 ounces rather than 8. Mine are about 16 ounces and I need at least three of those each morning just to get the old motor started. About 7 million tons of coffee beans were harvested in 2010.

Agriculture is the biggest consumer of water in the world today. According to UNICEF, two-thirds of all the water we take from lakes, rivers, streams and other freshwater sources is used for irrigation. Range wars have been fought over water for irrigation. Much of our popular literature and movies (especially old John Wayne movies) feature water disputes in the plot - which is what I’m trying to do with my book.

Mark Twain has been credited with saying, “Whiskey is for drinking . . .water is for fighting over,” although he may not actually have been the one to say that.

Do you suppose when the Bible talks about the world burning up that means we’re not going to have enough water in the future to fight those horrendous wildfires we seem to be having of late? It sure was touch and go this year. Three bags of poop on running out of water. Sam and I have to go now, we're feeling parched.

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