Monday, June 16, 2014

Today's Deep Echidne Thoughts: Inadvertent Meat-Eating, Tribalism And Window-Washing

And not so deep ones.

First, if a mosquito commits suicide in my cold coffee by this computer and I drink the coffee (because I like cold coffee but not ice coffee so I let it go cold), am I no longer a vegetarian?  How can I atone?  ---  Asking theoretically, of course.

Second, what can we do about tribalism?  The soccer games a lot of you are watching are about tribalism, the US gundamentalist ammosexual movement* is about tribalism, what is happening in the death fields of the Middle East is also largely about tribalism.  About who is in "our" group and who is not.

Tribalism in sports is much preferable to tribalism in the killing fields, naturally.  The UN should encourage it.  Indeed, we should bring back gladiator fights**, but only between the heads of the states and runners for those posts.

As an alternative to wars, that is.  And yes, I know it wouldn't work***, but the idea is a good one in theory.  We could allow modern weapons to make the fights equal for people of different sizes, ages and genders.  The outcome could only be protested as a prelude to a second match, between, say, the seconds-in-command.  The fight would never leak down to the general populations.

Third, window-washing.   This is a deep thought topic only because I have been doing it.  Imagine nearly hundred-year old windows, with that up-and-down guillotine movement.  Imagine having to wash them on the outside from a long distance from the ground, dangling half outside.

Imagine an intrepid goddess armed with a mallet and chisels (for opening recalcitrant antique windows),  bottles of window-washing liquid and rags, part of her clinging to the frame of the house, her mouth holding the rags (for lack of more arms (one is needed to hold on to the house for dear life) and a prehensile tail).  Imagine how all that looks and how it feels when the top frame decides to drop on the neck of the said goddess.

Well, I won, this last weekend.  But the victory is always temporary, as it may be in politics, too.  And that should bring you an odd kind of optimism when things are going very badly on the international front.
*These terms refer to second amendment fanatics.  I don't know who invented them but they are pretty clever slurs.
**Like John McCain in one corner, armed with hammers, John Kerry in the other corner, armed with French after-shave.  To make an example from the past.  So to say.
***It wouldn't work, because the minute we invented this scheme all countries would pick someone very brawny and violent and without relatives as the nominal head of the state.  Real strings of power would be held by the Usual Suspects.