Published: October 31st 2008October 31st 2008
Penguins and Sharks
So I mentioned a cool quote from a book Tara was reading and it’s pretty simple. In every group of penguins, when it’s time to jump into the waters, there is always a high risk of killer whales and danger, but one of those penguins always has to be first. I think I’d like to begin my life tomorrow being the first penguin in the water. I’m talking about turning into a, “yes,” man, finding Jesus under my bed or learning how do knit, but there are several new possibilities that exist within our finger tips back in the states, that a majority of people in the places I’ve traveled of late can only dream of. In short, I feel like I keep meeting people with the same story; they all wish they could have the ocean in front of them and at the very least the chance to be or not be the first penguin in. Or maybe I’m just to sympathetic with a sob story or overwhelmed by the quantity of them that I’m forgetting what I’ve come to believe of Ireland. Ireland is a place that wants and is pretending to be a bad version of the United States and it’s to busy wallowing in it’s ipods, Hewlitt Packard Americanized koosh jobs, and night clubs with cocktails to notice that they’re really still oppressed and lost. With all of this on my mind though, I wonder, what’s different about their story than ours? Sure we have it a lot better, but the circumstance and conditions we live in and under, seem eerily similar. It makes me wonder what I’m not noticing about my life back home and what’s going on around me. It makes me wonder if in the front of the group deciding if I want to dive in first or if I’m in the back trying to see what the hold up is. Simply put, it’s a sad case of action vs. reaction.
Again this is one of those instances where I appear to be down on Ireland, but I’m really not. If anything I’m attempting to explain how much more understanding on life I feel I am experiencing simply by being removed from my element of Chico and Marin County.
Allow me to elaborate. Old people back home, for the most part, are grumpy assholes who hate all the change around them and in many ways are jealous that their time is running out and they haven’t lived or done all they want. It’s a case of, “you don’t know how lucky you have it,” nonsense. Most of those old people have left the positive lessons of history and experience up to the books, school and television to teach, guide and help us understand life. These tools of learning in the wrong hands can be weapons of deception and brainwashing. In Ireland it’s different though. The older people we meet here have a wealth of knowledge and life experience laying dormant on their tongues and hearts just waiting for a young pup to ask them all about it. To them it’s a gift they want to share, like a guitar player who wishes to pass on his gift or an operative of life who possess a secret he or she desperately needs to pass along before it dies with them. The best part is that the entire package of knowledge being given doesn’t come in the form of a lecture; it comes in the form of a story, tale, music, song, or a drunken confession. It comes in such an honest, unique and pure style that it’s delivery is absorbed freely. My brief time spent listening and watching these happenings unfold around me has clued me in to a new medium of how to learn about life and myself.
The first few things I’ve already learned from Kevin a local bar patron is in direct relation to the penguin theory. Kevin also looks like Ben Franklin, so it makes it easier to listen to him because he reminds me of the man who orchestrated the Congressional Congress, Declaration of Independence, a polymath, has a chain of craft stores named for him and wrote porn.