Ravings of a big, hairless chimpanzee


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Ravings of a big, hairless chimpanzee

By Bobby Neal Winters

One of my favorite things to do is to sit in my office at home in the Spring, after school has either let out or has begun to abate, and let the cool air bathe me as I sit banging away on my computer and drinking coffee.

I am doing that right now, and it is every bit as nice as I’d remembered. The cool air sooths my face, and the sweet smells the flowers in our yard emit raise my spirits to elation. I sit at a crossroads between the natural and the unnatural. I know which way I should turn, I know the way I will turn, and I know they are not the same way.

This is a dilemma I face because I am a big, hairless chimpanzee. Those who know me will only correct this statement by telling me I am not all that hairless. The other chimps don’t worry about sending their kids to school, paying their bills, and keeping up with the Joneses. On the other hand I do have coffee and a computer.

And the Bible tells me I am made in the Image of God.

I am not sure I know what that means. I know I am in the Image of God and so is Jennifer Lopez. I know that the other chimpanzees are not made in the Image of God, and I also know that I look more like the other chimpanzees than I do Jennifer Lopez.
I am confused.

It must be that God looks with different eyes, or maybe there is more to this than just the plain words of it. I will think about this, but I will also envy our hairier kin their harmony with nature.

Realists will be quick to point out that modern humans live longer than the other chimpanzees and enjoy more comforts in those longer lifetimes. I would only counter this by saying this doesn’t seem to bother the chimps. Knowledge can bring comfort but it can also bring a disproportional amount of discontent.

I know we are out of harmony, I know this is not how it is supposed to be, but I don’t know how we can easily come back into harmony.
How can we come to a sustainable way of living?

We know that it is not the way as we Americans are now living. Out in Western Kansas they’ve been using fossil water to raise corn to fatten cattle to fatten us. The fatter we get, the fatter our doctors get, not that I have anything against doctors.

I am not sure that anyone ought to be listening to me, because I am clearly out of my mind. As I’ve made my way around the circle of the world, I’ve seen something of what the world has to offer. I’ve seen lots of happy folks, and I’ve seen folks who’ve gotten themselves into a lot of trouble.

I can’t tell you the secret to being happy, and anyone who had Virgil Gantt for English Literature can tell you about Richard Cord. I can tell you that you can always find somebody who’s got more that you do, and you can make yourself unhappy because of it.

I do believe there are things everyone ought to have like a full belly, a warm bed, and whatever work you can do. That last one is not an option. If you have the first two and don’t have the last one, you might as well be one of those featherless chickens we hear about that sit in cages 24/7 with feeding tubes stuck down their throats.

Take those three things and add a little leisure time to interact with your fellow man, and that might very well be paradise.
The question I have for you is this. If that were paradise, would you want it? The story we’ve been given tells us we were shown paradise and thought we could do better.

My coffee cup is empty now and the smell of the flowers is drawing me outside, so you can tell me what you think later.
(Bobby Winters is a Professor of Mathematics, writer, and speaker. You may contact him at bwinters@cox.net or visit his website at www.okieinexilepress.com. )
Kindest Regards, Okie!

Good to hear you and yours are OK, if a little busy. I can relate. Come back soon! Your prose is missed!