Sunday, June 19, 2005

Innocence lost

On the subway, on our way back from seeing "Batman Begins" [which was pretty good, even though the theater we saw it in seemed to be trying to stun us into submission by having the volume turned up to Disaster Area-like levels], we were treated to two very different viewpoints on the continuum of human behavior.

At one end of the scale was the fellow who staggered in, fell into a seat and then proceeded to nearly fall out of it several times. His head [and torso] would start sagging forward, getting to within maybe a foot of the floor and then he'd pull himself back into his seat with a jerk and begin the whole process again. He was clearly feeling the effects of a recreational pharmaceutical of some sort, and it was something stronger than alcohol or weed. Clearly a man with some life experiences, so to speak.

At the other end was the little 5 year-old Hispanic girl that was eagerly showing Christina her jewelry, which included a gold ring on her middle finger. In her desire to make sure that Christina saw her ring, and what was written on it, she made a little fist, stuck up her middle finger, and proudly waved it in Christina's face, all while saying "What says it ? What says it ?", totally oblivious to the meaning usually associated with that gesture. Innocence personified.

I'm sure there's some pithy take-away from this, but I'm damned if I can think of one right now, so I'll just file it under my "Subway as microcosm of human behavior" heading and leave coming up with a Zen koan that captures the lesson contained herein as an exercise to the reader.

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