green-eggs-and-hamMy favourite kids' book is undoubtedly Green Eggs & Ham by the legendary Dr Seuss. I love reading it to my boys, putting on the amateur dramatics as the persistent Sam-I-Am character goes to increasingly bizarre lengths to pursue and persuade the other (unnamed) protagonist to try the rather unpalatable looking, but apparently tasty, eponymous dish.

Of course the main lesson the book is trying to teach kids is to try something before dismissing it, but as I read it last night to the middle-sized one, I couldn't help thinking Sam-I-Am is also a great metaphor for the way far too many sustainability advocates try and bully other people into 'green' behaviour. If you stuff green (eggs and ham) under someone's nose and say 'try this', they'll simply walk away (and maybe jump on a train - a train! a train! - or a boat - with a goat? Sorry, I get carried away...)

In the real world, we don't have the time or energy to wage a war of attrition to break every colleague's will the way Sam-I-Am eventually does. We've got to think of ways to make the green dish more inviting in the first place, so people will give it a try and find out how nutritious and tasty it really is.


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