Ducks' Capacity for the Enjoyment of Life
Here is a picture of ducks who have been slimed by the latest oil spill. They are doomed, and the water they float in is doomed. But here they are doing what ducks do, up until the very last breath of their lives. They have no horror on their faces, just a relaxed but miserable expression. They know. They are resigned.
They know but they do not question or rail against the injustice of their fate. The patience in their manner is evident. So is the fact they are numbed to the situation. Just a few hours or days ago, life was just ducky. And now it's all over but the shouting, buddies. So let's not shout. No one is going to save us, so let's close this chapter of our lives with some dignity, some beauty. See you over there later.
We humans feel we are facing our doom, too—most of us have that dreadful anticipation that these are the last of our days. But we feel tense, kicking ourselves for not saving up, not voting 'the right way,' or some such thing, as if there were a right way to vote, as if our vote accomplished something, as if saving up would make some real difference. We are in some apprehensive state of mind even though nothing has happened yet. We are not enjoying what we have now, as the black ducks are doing.
Sometimes a capacity for thought is a disadvantage. Sometimes not thinking is wisdom. Sometimes using every last ounce of gratitude for what we still have pays off. Sometimes we should just feel, feel the best way we can, because the stress of worrying about what's gonna be just makes it worse.
So let's kick back and do what takes our minds off of things while we still can.