Sunday, March 01, 2015

The on- and off-ramps of life ... and death

For the last three days, every time I drove out of the garage, I made sure I had two apples with me.  Two "pink lady" apples.

Sounds strange to you, perhaps.

Lemme back up by a few days.  About two weeks ago, when I was at the grocery store, I looked for my favorite apples.  I am very particular about them.  But, the store did not carry any that day.  So, I bought my second favorite--Pink Lady.

I then went to a different grocery store to get the ciabatta bread for the sandwiches that I have.  I am very particular about them.  After picking up the bread, I wandered over to the fruit section and, hey, they had my favorite apples.  I bought them.  I am very particular about them. Yes, this old man almost always knows what he wants.

So, now, I had my supply of my favorite apples, and my second-favorite ones.  Thankfully, I had purchased only two "pink lady" apples.

Whether it is apples or anything else in life, we prefer to ignore the second-best when the best is around.  The story of my life and "I don't get no respect" eh!

Which is why the last three days I have been driving around with those two apples.  Why drive with them?  Good question.

My plan was that I would give the apples to any one of the folks who are typically to be found at the corners of the road intersections that I pass.  They are always there during the day times.  One even at a freeway off-ramp.

But, the last three days, I simply did not find even one.  Not one of them at any one of those intersections.  How could that be!

Earlier this evening, as I headed out, I once again remembered to take the apples with me.

I decided to take the freeway and then get off at the second exit where I have always seen a guy.  I turned on to the ramp and was about to speed up when I thought I saw three geese by the roadside.  I hit the brakes and drove slowly--in case one decided to dart all of a sudden.

As I rounded the curve, it seemed like they were kind of standing around for a reason.  There was a dead goose by the roadside.

A hit and run.

The sight of a dead bird, with its buddies hanging around is not for the faint of heart.  Thankfully, there were two cars behind me and I had to get going.

I wondered, yet again, how people could possibly go hunting.
How cold-blooded they have to be to aim the rifle and shoot a deer.
To kill a bird in flight.
To hook a fish.
When I veer off the vegetarian path, I know I would never eat it if I had to kill it myself--to take a life away is just ain't me.  What a hypocritical wuss I am!

I reached the off-ramp.  Nobody there.

After seeing the dead bird, I now worry about the absence of the unlucky humans at the intersections.  I hope they are ok somewhere.

Maybe I will eat the second-best apples, after all--there are people who cannot afford even my second-best taste.


Mike Hoth said...

"My favorite apples"? Are you purposefully avoiding the name of these apples so your students do not bribe you? How are they supposed to pass your classes, by studying?

I was waiting for a comment about driving around with two pink ladies in your car, but perhaps that would have been too easy. Or that damned goose murderer ruined the joke.

Sriram Khé said...

haha ... the old polished apple for the teacher tradition, er, bribe you are referring to, eh!
My favorite is a cultivar developed at the U. of Minnesota ... that's about the hint that you need ;)

Anne in Salem said...

I thought the bribe, er, gift, was chocolate?

Do you distinguish between hunters who kill for trophies and those who eat what they kill? I have had the pleasure of eating a variety of types of game hunted by friends and had no ethical dilemma.

Do you remember a few years back, someone killed and cleaned a lot of traffic-problem-causing geese in Bend and donated all the meat to a homeless shelter? The shelter loved it, the residents loved it, the traffic engineers loved it, but the bird-lovers hated it.

Sriram Khé said...

Can be chocolates ... can be apples ... can be CDs ...

Nope, I have a problem with killing. With killing living things. Spider, ants, dogs, deer, chicken, geese, elephants, rhinos, humans, you name them all ... Plus, I have problems with a framework that puts humans in the center and on top of everything else.

Ramesh said...

I just cannot understand hunting as a sport. Every grain of me is against it.

As for hunting for food, I won't do it, but I won't condemn those who do.

Sriram Khé said...

Hunting for food in the absence of other sources is different from hunting for food when there are alternatives in plenty, right? Even then you would be ok with the hunting for food?