I gave Peter Miguel Camejo a Louisiana quarter at his fundraiser in the Adobe Building in Mountain View on July 23rd, 2002.

One of the phrases in my little speech that I have thought the most about is "I started learning how to drive less." At some point I realized that when I give my little speech to African Americans, one of the most common responses I get is "drive less, is that it?" That made me really think about what "driving less" is.

According to my dictionary, there are ten meanings for the word less, but all of them are similar enough that they boil down to something like "a smaller quantity." Thinking about other uses of the word, I remember shaking hands with Jim Less, who at the time was a fairly famous basketball player, nearing the end of his NBA career. Undoubtedly, he is less famous now, because that was about eight years ago.

All this came to mind again at the Palo Alto Chili Cook-Off on July 4th. There was a woman tabling for the city, giving out zipper pulls with the slogan "USE LESS RECYCLE THE REST" It is nice to know the slogan can't easily be misunderstood. That thing is now the zipper pull on my bicycle cargo carrier's main zipper because the thing has three zippers which I confused far too often. Putting it there was yet another way I have found to "drive less". I get less confusion, and everyone that reads it gets an opportunity to think about using less.

Using less is certainly something I have learned I need to do if I want to have any impact as a "back bencher" in the Green Party. Consider Peter Camejo, the Green Party of California's current Candidate for Governor. He has gone to many Green Party meetings over the years, but even so I only know him slightly. I wanted to give him a useful idea when he came to Santa Clara County in June, so I told him "I've been trying to figure out how the laws of thermodynamics apply to the political system. What it seems to be is every time you go around the loop, you get less." It used up most of the opportunity I had to talk to him.

Tian Harter