When respected weather forecasters start sounding like mad scientists from a Hollywood apocalypse movie … maybe it's time to start taking things seriously.

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: Whether your thoughts about climate change are emotional (that'd be Red) or based on fact and science (Black, of course), there's no getting around the fact that it's a controversial subject, although the recently released United Nations report seems to be undeniable.


Red may not pay attention to all the details, but she's been a climate change "believer" for a while now. To date, she hasn't been a "Debbie Downer" (as she'd say) or outspoken (although she does admire the tenacity, if maybe not the personality, of environmental activist Greta Thunberg who got the world's attention with her "How dare you" comment to the United Nations), but things have now changed dramatically,

One of my favorite movies is "The Day After Tomorrow" with Dennis Quaid, which is all about an unexpected, and disastrous, turn in the timing of climate change. When it was released in 2004, I thought the movie had great special effects, good acting, but a logic-defying plotline – now, I feel like it was more of a Hollywood version of a documentary predicting where we're heading. Rapidly.

Black is used to Red's love of movies, and the occasional analogies to real-life (and often rolls her eyes at them), but couldn't help but think that it was only two years later, in 2006, that Vice President Al Gore was behind the documentary, "An Inconvenient Truth." While many people questioned the seriousness (and timeline) of climate change, Black asked herself, "What if it was the reason for the rapidly changing weather patterns?" And that if we did nothing (which she often explains is a decision – a decision to maintain the status quo), we might find ourselves in a dire situation. One that could've been avoided.

We aren't experts, but there's no ignoring the United Nations report (technically, it was issued by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a body of scientists convened by the United Nations) that forecasts a potentially extremely dire situation within the next few decades. It explains how the dramatic and catastrophic weather events we've seen in the last few years aren't coincidences but rather a harbinger of things to come.

Regardless of what you may have thought before, it's becoming harder and harder to deny the potentially catastrophic impact of climate change and what we've already seen in our lifetime (National Geographic has a library of climate change articles). The key's not only talking about it … but doing something about it. Yes, governments need to take action, but as individuals, we can do our share. And even though cars are part of the problem, Black can't help but have a racing analogy,

When you race, there is not much you can do about the next corner because it is coming too quickly. It is a commitment you have already made. You see it in your peripheral vision, but you are focused on the things you can change. On the next lap, you focus on improving what you did last time. But, if you find yourself heading straight toward a wall, you quickly slow down and steer away. We are heading toward a climate change wall – at full speed – and need to take control of the wheel. Immediately!

Some things never change, like our Thanksgiving routines. But that’s ok, as Thanksgiving’s about traditions, so it seems only appropriate that we’d like to repeat what we’ve told you before …

We'll keep this simple and to-the-point … Happy Thanksgiving!

Sadie Hawkins Day started as a made-up holiday in a comic strip called Li’l Abner, but Black finds the idea of women needing a “special day” to feel empowered is … well, comical.

Comic strip or reality show: A group of bachelors participates in a foot race, and whoever's caught by the single woman in the race will become her husband.

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: We may be sisters, but except for growing up with the same parents in the same house in New York, that may be where the similarities end; especially in terms of dating "protocol" as Black never thought twice about asking boys (and later men) out on a date, while Red never gave it any thought, accepting the convention that boys did the asking. (She did make an exception for her senior prom but was shocked when he accepted.)

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Tomorrow’s Election Day, and our thoughts about the importance and challenges of voting haven’t changed since last year (see below) – although the stakes may have gone up. (Think Roe v. Wade and how the Supreme Court has sent it back to the states.) Black wishes more states offered referendums so we could vote on specific issues instead of trying to find the candidate that most closely represents our positions and then actually stays true to their word. Which, unfortunately, makes voting much harder than it needs to be …

So many people have fought for the right to vote, yet so many don't even bother to vote.

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: Like many of us, Red can come up with a whole list of reasons why she didn't plan to vote this Election Day, but what she thought was a sarcastic comment from Black would point out the challenge of balancing philosophical beliefs with reality.

Red, being that former straight-A student, remembers the first time she voted and how she felt it was her civic responsibility, but that she'd never just vote by party line (for her, it was never that simple, especially not these days). That each vote needs to be a conscious one. But that takes lots of "homework", so unless it's a presidential or gubernatorial election, she tends to sit out most of them. Which she felt was just fine, until Black pointed out,

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