Saturday, February 03, 2007
My penultimate year in High School was a breeze when compared to the first.
I think it was a mistake in assigning students to the wrong -make that the wrongest- school, for my first two years in H.S. that is. I and a bunch of other decent kids were somehow mixed up with the riff-raff's broods and dispatched to the prison... pardon, juvenile jail... sorry, High School named after a saint and across the street from a church and a cemetery too! Alas, the junior riff-raff was running amok during recess and lunchtime - one day, for instance, they came back from the cemetery (lost boys eat their lunch there, y'know) with a SKULL - to play soccer with it. I believe that the sight of this was my first genuine pang of repulsion and overall aversion towards certain specimens of the human species...
Compared to that, thus, my penultimate year in High School (in a different institution) was a breeze. My last year was even better. I had survived being juxtaposed with the lowest of the low; I could breathe easy among the nerds, turds, himbos and a few low-lives (junior, going on "young adult") without a care really... But I digress...
I remember a class I had back then - DESSIN TECHNIQUE.
We drew! Not quite the "win, lose or draw" way though; more like, as the name of the course implies, technical stuff! Building plans, blueprints; that sort of boring stuff! On the back of my drawings, I'd often draw caricatures of the teacher, my classmates and myself! I kept those and it is a good thing too; that way, I immortalized that entire scene that would have, otherwise, been lost forever to the uncaring sands of time (but who can blame "Father Time" for doing so, since he's seen it all and we, in that class, must not be merely a dime-a-dozen but a penny-a-gazillion to him! Having said that, I spurn "father time" and care not one iota what he would think - would if he was anything close to real, evidently. Calling time a father is the apex of idiocy if you ask me; for it is said, in the Good Book, that we shall not call anyone down here "Father" for we have ONE Father and He Is In The Heavens! Our Earthly sire aside, of course, God Is our only true Father. Forevermore! But I am digressing here, once again...)
And so, in that course, we had dire need of... masking tape!
I had bought some - whereas three quarters of my classmates had not! And so, out of the kindness of my heart, I lended them my roll every week for the first few months... I was so sure they'd buy a roll for themselves within that timespan - but they did not! After months of this, I actually wondered if I'd have enough tape for myself for the whole school year (and maybe the next year as well - if I took another course in this area? I am merely expressing a hypothesis as to what was on my mind back then, really... Since I do not recall anymore!)
And so, I told my profiteering classmates that I was cutting them off in the endless supply of masking tape...! (Hey - each new drawing required to be taped to the drawing board - all four corners, as you may suspect! We did more than one drawing per course! And the schoolyear was going to stretch from September to July! Economical teeny-weeny me was genuinely concerned there - I think! *lol*)
As it were, my concerns were unfounded - I had plenty of tape left on my roll as the year wrapped up and, on top of that, there was no other course to take there... In short, I had saved up on the masking tape for absolutely nothing! There is a lesson to be learned from all this - as there almost always is from virtually everything and anything of little significance in our lives...! ;)
I see it so often elsewhere too: people saving a precious set of bedsheets or a silky tablecloth "for a special occasion"... One that may never come! And then, these people die - and the saved up objects are left behind, unused. Likewise, saving money is wise and all - but if we have no (worthy) heirs, we might just as well spend it all ourselves! Saving oneself for that special someone is the lone exception to this; for it is good and truly paramount to try and keep as close to "sacred" the temple that we have been given for our sparkle of the Spirit (our soul) and that temple is our body indeed. (These fitness freaks that I see, who will not allow into their bodies any food they do not deem edible, and then turn around and have the morals of a Paris (or a Hilton) - well, those have it all upside down, really! But this is another digression I do believe...)
As I have been saying these past few days on TLB Prime - and the "fable of the masking tape" emphasizes it metaphorically if not lyrically (!) I am sure - we ought to give more. We ought to be less attached to physical objects and/or "things"... We ought to be generous, altruistic, willing to share - everything we own is but ours on loan when we really think about it... Nothing will belong to us "forever" (unless someone stuffs it into our casket when the time comes...!)
Our lone "forever" riches are our SOULS - you've guessed it! ;)
Giving away earthly things will win us amends for our souls - indulgences for all the other stuff we did that wasn't exactly "right"...! That seems like the best trade-off ever to me! Out with the material, and in with the eternal? It just can't be beat! What a sweet deal! ;)
Not that we have to give all we own away overnight, like St. Francis of Assisi did. It worked for him - but that was his mission, his destiny. Nowadays, doing that would be suicide! Many a shrewd shrink would repeat that "people giving away their personal belongings to friends and family are sending out a distress signal - they may be depressed or, worse yet, suicidal" - right. Anybody ever heard of a great humanitarian shrink that gave plenty to charity? Draw your own conclusions there...!
Personally, I wonder where all my "stuff" will go to (some label theirs derisively as "junk", "crap" or worse...! It's their prerogative!)
I mean, of course, when I am no longer "around"...
Will my heirs value "my stuff" as much as I do (or once did, really)
Shouldn't I just give that stuff away while I am indeed "around" - it sure does make sense to do so! (Another anecdote, this time on that: my paternal great-grandmother had had the foresight to do just that; alas, my mother was her usual kind self and advised her to keep what was dear to her for as long as she lived. She did - she died - and the heirlooms went to the wrong hands afterwards -not at all the ones my great-grandmother had intended to bequeath them to- because, despite her foresight, she had left no detailed will...!)
As far as more common commodities go (i.o.w. - cash!) why do we want to keep it all for ourselves so damn much - when we are not even guaranteed to be able to make use of it all (heck - of even half of it) during our lifetime? It always reminds me of that passage of the Bible that makes mention of the rich man who was content to see his stocks well-furnished for the coming year (if not years...!)
And then God Spoke and He Said: "foolish one - don't you know that on this night even, I will take you. And what will your riches be good for then?" (I paraphrase...!)
Hopefully, they served to feed many of the hungry in the foolhardy overzealous man's neighborhood - and there are so many of those, hungry and poor, throughout the world - while we in the Western civilization throw away so much... It makes no sense at all. Not only do we not share what we have - but we mindlessly let it go to waste?!?
We know better than that - we may not do it, but we do know better.
Self-sustenance and the well-being of our own brood come first - that is a given. But anything in excess... You know...!? WE CAN SPARE IT - WE CAN GIVE IT!
A mere suggestion, thrown to the wind (lest it is to the wolves?!?) would be to keep the capital - but give the compounded interest to the needy? A percentage of the interest? Forego unnecessary renovations to your home, for example, to feed someone and save lives - hmm?
Besides, "to spread the wealth" is both a bit of Godly behaviour as it is also Biblical...!
AND logical! :)
After all, why else are we on passage on this earth, eh? Other than do some good...?