Thursday, January 8, 2009

Would you rather be a squirrel?

Being human is really odd. Evolution has given us the gift of unique fears that other species have the comfort of never experiencing. Now, as humans we rarely, if ever, fear that a bigger more violent animal will eat us. We rarely, if ever, need to worry about looking for food and shelter. We are even intelligent enough to design methods of keeping other dangerous humans out of our dwellings, so we need not fear, at least not on a consistent basis, intruders. To my understanding those are the most common fears among other species: 1) Will I be eaten? 2) Where will I find food? 3) Will some enemy find their way into my home? It is my belief that our large heads and ability to reason and learn has also allowed us to fear more. Now we fear things like bad grades at school. We fear our inability to pay our bills. We fear catching some horrible disease. We fear the flirtation we see our partner bestow upon another. We fear our overly-aggressive boss. There are countless fears that we now posses in all the glory of our intelligence and strength.

It's true though, we are still just dumb animals. And we do possess many of the same fears of other species. We just had this curse of a larger cranium bestowed upon us. Would it be better to be a lesser species - like a squirrel? They need not worry about good grades, bosses, or their partner leaving them for another. I'm having a difficult time remembering what is good about being human. Could anyone remind me?

-Plastered Patty

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