Snails

Buzz words from today’s media: financial crisis, political crisis, bankruptcy, lay-offs, plagiarism, elections, hail, earthquakes, robbery, crime, etc.  Anybody with a sense of danger, let alone the primal instinct of survival, reacts to this siege of daily threats.  Threats that endanger all elements of comfort and peaceful normality: from physical safety, comfort of a decent living, security of income to moral, spiritual or social balance.

According to theory, in face of danger we have to choose between fight and flight.  The fight seems almost futile since the “enemy” outweighs our individual strength.  How can you fight with unleashed nature forces?  How can you counterattack massive lay-offs and exchange rate?  How can you act against the political fog and quarrels?

Yes, there are insurance policies and collective labor agreements. There are financial instruments that can mitigate foreign exchange risk.  There are parties or associations or organizations that influence more or less the governmental policies.  But how efficient are all these in really preventing damages?  And how much do we pay to get such shields?

Hence the snail metaphor – a creature endowed only with defensive means.  It always carries with difficulty its protective shell for those occasions when its considerable burden will be worth the effort as it is the only kit of survival.  Its speed of reaction is minimal and its invariable response is withdrawal inside the shell.  The snail must simply carry it steadily regardless of the intricate beauty of its geometry.  Tedious and tiring task, but mandatory for the snail’s own existence.

This is pretty much how we are nowadays.  Snails who believe other snails are enemy.  Snails who think any other snail is enemy.  Snails with rough and beaten shells.  Snails with no inviting picture ahead.  Snails constantly scrutinizing the future to anticipate new dangers while carrying with precaution and pain the shield-shell hoping to be able to survive every single challenge.

Do you fathom how blank and monotone is snail’s life?