The team invites media folks over to eat salad and talk about their sustainability efforts.
Sustainability. Is that like how they make sure the ketchup will come off my Dockers?
Not quite. It’s how they make sure that we’ll be around tomorrow.
Ah. Kinda like filling 400 column inches a week with simple-minded dialogues I have with myself?
So what are they doing to sustain themselves?
It’s not so much themselves they’re sustaining — it’s everybody.
And they do this by feeding media people?
Sort of. They know that media people with full bellies are way better at telling the rest of the world about the team’s sustainableness.
And what are they doing to sustain my pants?
It’s not your pants — it’s the environment. Recycling and using more efficient forms of energy. And erecting wind turbines atop Progressive Field.
You said “erecting.”
Sorry, that word gets me every time.
So, wind turbines, huh. Is that the big fusilli bicycle they put up in right field?
No, you’re thinking of Bernie Brewer. The Tribe’s new wind turbine is a model of energy efficiency for the rest of us. It generates power.
The Tribe could use some power. Especially from the corner infield positions.
Not that kind of power — the kind that makes things go and heats things up.
Like hot dogs?
Hot dogs, pizza nuggets, sure.
I like hot dogs sliced up in my mac & cheese. Would it keep the noodles hot too?
It would. But the Tribe’s turbine isn’t so much a valuable power source as it is a beacon of hope for the rest of us — a sign of where sustainability measures could take us.
So they don’t heat my hot dogs with it? How come?
Because the new turbine doesn’t generate all that much energy. If the winds blow just right, it would supply power to about four homes per year.
Wow. How can I sign up for that?
You can’t. It doesn’t actually heat four homes. The power joins the rest of Progressive Field’s juice to help achieve all of the ballpark’s power needs.
So how much are they actually getting from that thing?
About enough to heat your hot dogs.
That’s pretty good. What else is the Tribe doing to sustain itself?
In addition to being the first team to have a wind turbine, it was also the first American League club to go solar. And they recycle a lot of your trash. And they use products that are easily recycled.
Well, the knives you slice up your hot dogs with, for one thing. Those are made out of sugar cane.
Sugar cane?! I love sugar.
So I could eat the knives?
Yes. Try them with a dollop of Nutella.
Terrific. Here’s a question: If they want to cut down on waste, why does every beer you buy there get taken out of its can and poured into a cup? Seems wasteful.
It is. And starting this year, they hand you the can directly.
Couldn’t they just pour the beer into my mouth from a big jug?
They could, but they’re not that sustainable yet.
What else do they do?
They use only environmentally-friendly cleaning supplies. And their front-office folks recycle stuff.
What about the grounds crew? Do they use those old-fashioned mowers that make that whirring sound?
No, they use gas mowers. And pesticides and other chemicals to keep the field pretty.
That doesn’t sound very sustainable.
It’s worked for 100 years or so, and so far no genetic deformities that we know of.
I see what you mean. What about the ballplayers?
Most of them aren't deformed either.
That’s not what I mean. What do they do to help with sustainability?
Well, the front office has what it calls “a great shame element down there.”
It means when they see a player throw a bottle in the trash, they make him feel bad about it.
And then they flog him?
No, they just kinda guilt him into acting better.
So players don’t really recycle?
Many of them do.
What about Johnny Damon. We sorta recycled him, right?
Taking other teams’ trash and reusing it?
It’s kind of like that.
What about when they’re not even good enough to play for us?
Then they do golfing shows on Sports Time Ohio.
But couldn’t we recycle them too? Like maybe render their bones into a sort of big-league gruel that could be fed to cows?
Jesus. Did you take your pill today?
I thought you did.