Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Of mice and men

Is it a coincidence that Michel de Montaigne and Dulce Maria Cardoso favorite pastime is just let time pass by and do nothing? Just like me. Why do we like this so much? Is it your favorite pastime too? Why?

This weekend I returned from my summerholiday. For 3 weeks I was with my family at the Mediterranean near Martigue (France). What can I say?  It was a good and lovely holiday. The weather was warm (>25C) and sunny. In my country it rained for more than 2 weeks. I read  6 books. Kids swam a lot at the swimmingpool and in the sea. We made a trip to Marseille twice. I loved the "wild" Calanques between Marseille and Casis. Strolled on the streets of Vincent van Gogh' Arles. Visited Cezanne's old atelier on a hill  (Lauves) in Aix-en-Provence. After 100 years Mont Sainte-Victoire is no longer visible from his/ this spot. Big trees everywhere. My kids were impressed by the  castle of  Tarascon. I missed the medieval smell. I looked for mouses (didn't see any). I made 2 coastwalks of more than 5 hours alone. I love to walk alone.

I could give you many more details.  I could show you all the pictures that were made. You could interview me, my wife and our 4 kids. We could ... - there must be more - but in the end we will end with "empty" hands. The truth is that we can't freeze or grab the days that pass by one by one. In a way I enjoy my life most when I don't freeze it. When I'm out of control. When I have no real target other than just let time pass by. Read a little. Dream a litte. Talk, eat, make love and hug a little. Write a little.

Since 10.000 BC species 'homo sapiens' settled down. No more walking around looking for something to eat. They settled down in farms and cities. Enough food nearby. Cooked food. More and more of us hardly need to invest time in getting and digest something to eat. So much much spare time compared to the other 'homo' species. It made us the species of today.

What's my point? We as species 'homo sapiens' lost something  since the agricultural and city revolution. Before this revolution - in my opinion the only two real ones - we had only one target: food, shelter, safety and reproduction. What did we lost? We lost track of our species dedication. We gained distraction. We gained so much distraction that most of us are most of the time lost. Lost! Got lost in distraction.

Since our species settled down we live together with mouses. Just realize every now and then that most of our species 9.000 generations of ancestors were not familiar with mouses. Nor with houses. Nor with cities. They walked around looking for ...

Question: are those whose favorite pastime is 'Just let time pass by and do nothing' those who are NOT lost in distraction?

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