Someone to represent the future

Location Kitchen table in Spanner office. Too many people upstairs, can't think. | Mood Re-inspired | Date 3 October 2005
Author (full name): 
Franny Armstrong
Kitchen table in Spanner office. Too many people upstairs, can't think.
Wind whistling, windows rattling
Only tiredness
3 October 2005
Current silver lining: 
Got next Crude character(s)

The Guy familyThe Guy family.

Photograph: Charlotte Rushton


We found our third Crude character last night. In fact, we got two for the price of one. We'd been looking for ages to find someone to represent alternative energy and the future. Various researchers had trawled through all the different options till I decided on wind power. Not least because the UK is the windiest place in Europe and Top 5 in the world, so we'd have a good chance of finding a local person (helpful for money/carbon budgets). But we have to tread carefully as we don't want to make out that the British have all the answers, when we are one of the biggest perpetrators.

We got 40 or so replies to our advert sent via the British Wind Energy Association, looking for someone who works in wind, but who is also, crucially, making all sorts of changes in their own lives, to reduce their family's carbon dioxide. Lizzie rang them all up and narrowed it down to four or five, none of whom were female, which was a bummer as we'd been trying to even the balance up (with Jeh Wadia and Francesco Frangialli being, obviously, male). We met Piers Guy and his wife Lisa and three spectacularly good looking and wholesome children at their organic farm in Cornwall last night. Made some biodiesel for their car, drove to wind turbine he'd put up for a neighbour, fed their animals, picked the organic veg and then ate a spectacular dinner where the kids (4, 7, 9) drank wine if they wanted to.

We left them with Drowned Out and McLibel, which they promised to watch to see if they'd be up for being in the film. Of course we said we were meeting other people - which we were - but there is no doubt that they are the perfect characters for us. So let's hope they like my films.

Meeting them has turned everything around for me. On our 6-hour train trip back to London, I didn't stop blabbing on and on about how I'm going to buy a farm in Cornwall and live off the grid and persuade all my family to return from their far-flung corners before the oil runs out and on and on and on. Lizzie pointed out that if Piers & Lisa inspired me that much with one visit, they will undoubtedly inspire people watching the film too.

(It's weird how it seems possible to specify very exactly what you are looking for in a person and then you can always track them down. My hippy friends would claim magical forces. I would argue statistics.)