Tuesday, April 06, 2010
I now have definitive proof to the unanswered question; “Why are we alone in the Universe?”.
I should point out that I do not make this claim lightly. I have thought about this for almost an hour now, but unlike most of my fleeting thoughts - I still believe I am right in this.
Like most epiphanies, this though can in the most unlikely of places - the Lido deck of the cruise liner Dawn Princess.
I currently sit in the antithesis of the Lido deck. In the ships library there are still rules of etiquette to follow. Silence is golden, no one is chewing their cud, and the smell of old books fill the air. I feel the last vestige civilization surrounds me; a bastion of books to keep away the marauding horde of sheep - nay cows - shuffling between the pool deck and the food troughs.
God - I loathe crowds. Every day I find an area of the ship bereft of as many people as possible. Here, with nothing but deep blue ocean surrounding me I attain a small measure of self - disconnected. Here I understand concepts of “Far from the Maddening Crowd”, and “An Island to One’s self”; but at the same time I realize it’s always on my terms.
Breakfast and lunch offer two alternatives. You can either be served, or serve yourself.
Opting to be served avoids the crowds, and the fiercely pitched battles over table spaces, but inevitably has a downside - you never know who you’re going to be sat next to. Trust me: It could be just as bad. Another negative to this option is the size of the portions, and the time taken to dine; both decided by the hyped up waiter staff, who seem to be paid by a) the number of patrons they serve every hour or/and b) by how far they stretch the food budget. It’s a whistle stop tour - this silver service option.
Self service would almost be tragic, if it wasn't for all the adults playing musical chairs will full lunch trays. Those lucky buggers already holding a table stake, smiling with a false sense of accomplishment, are reluctant to give up their prize possessions, even well after they have eaten. There is nothing more demoralizing than seeing your fellow man walk aimlessly amongst the tables, his lunch ever cooling; a modern day flying dutchman - ever approaching an empty table, only to have it taken as he comes into range of possession.
I’d laugh if I sometimes wasn’t playing the dutchman myself.
Still, I cant help but smile when I imagine the production crew edit the day’s video tape and show it on some Asian reality TV show. It’s all there - man’s inhumanity to man. Class structures, and turf wars go head to head with the meek and the mad - stirring stuff, all ending as they finally find their spot to graze, smiling at those less fortunate still searching.
At the end of the day it’s just that simple. Why would you bother? There’s so many of us. We’re all on an important mission, and we’re always looking for that table to put our food tray on. We speak so many different languages - yet we are all the same. It’s a complex machine of people, places and purpose. Frankly there’s really no room for outsiders, except to look in and discover; so maybe, just for now, we’re really just not worth the effort.
I’m just hoping they discover the libraries.