Monday, March 06, 2006


"The gift of fantasy has meant more to me than my talent for absorbing positive knowledge."
-Albert Einstein

I have a friend who shares my penchant for deep fantastical conversation. We have an on going dialog of criss-crossing thoughts on life, science, religion, morality, spirituality, and the Art of Play. We often sprial into these musings when issues of euthanasia or therapy confront our animal friends at the Wildlife Center.

One such conversation turned to how we humans define, and value Life. Clearly we place a higher value on the life of a dog over the life of a fruit fly, so maybe size, and life expectancy equate to higher value. Then again, we value domestic pets more so than food animals like cows and sheep.

And what about Plants! Plants are alive, but even vegans have no problem killing and eating them! What then is the equation for how we rate the value of life? And for that matter, what DEFINES life?

Fire eats, grows, breathes and dies. Is Fire a Living Thing?

Everything in the universe is made up of Atoms. Energy swirling about in infinite combinations of positive and negative charges. Why are some things considered alive, while others inanimate? Is consciousness the key? For that matter, what is consciousness? Most scientists struggle when asked to define this term.

So our conversation turned yet again, to energy, and the infinite variety in the known, (and unknown) Universes. Could there be intelligent life out there somewhere that looks like fire, yet thinks like us? Could LIFE exist in forms beyond our capacity to imagine? Do plants have feelings? If so, then might other objects "feel" too?

Could the things around us, we define as inanimate, actually be alive in ways that we are just unable to see?

"Maybe they are." My good friend answered. "My coffee Cup might be alive. For Instance, Have you ever noticed that some glasses like certain liquids, and seem to reject others. If you use the wrong cup, it just doesn't taste right. When I go to my cupboard and get a cup, I always ask the cups which one likes Coke, or coffee, or whatever I intend to drink." She giggled playfully.

Milk tastes awful in a coffee cup, and Coke tastes different in a juice glass than a plastic cup, and I would NEVER drink hot tea from a wine glass!

I never realized it, but I do this too. I think about what I want to drink then go to the cupboard and search for just the right glass; though I must admit, I never considered the opinion of a contentious cup, to be the root of a bitter beverage!

Hmmm, so I need to ask my cups and glasses what they prefer, and be considerate of their "feelings."


Now there's a new perspective on life worth toasting.



Trée said...

Coke in a can or plastic bottle has never ever tasted as good as the old fashioned glass hourglass bottles--especially those small six ounce ones.

Now, there is a difference between the small glass bottles from the fridge vs an ice chest on a hot day. Seems my coke prefers to travel and not be locked away in the static fridge. And my coke prefers hot weather to cold.

So now, me and my cokes are friends. I buy them in small glass and take them on the road. And everyone is very happy! :-D

Kelley Bell said...


(I Knew you would 'get it' )

Doug said...

Here you are!

I'm pro-fire.

Kelley Bell said...

That's Funny Doug...

really. Im crackin up.

garnet david said...

Hi Kelley- You ne'er fail to 'maze me! I was thinking today (funny thing) about how most people, including me, eat meat daily, dead animal, and yet spend thousands of dollars a year caring for pets. Those discrepencies grate on me constantly, but people bore of hearing about them. "That's just the way things are".

Wine is DEFINATELY alive. Each glass speaks to me, and sings from the lips of a large tulip shaped vessel like Pavarotti from the Met. Each bottle tells a story from beginning to end. Wine shared connects us through its life given between our sipping smiles.

Kelley Bell said...

OH, David! A wine Lover...Why am I not suprised.

I, myself am such a clumsy amature in this arena. (I know my wine about as well as I could play your claranet!)

But I do so love the idea of wine, and all its complexities.

My little brother is the wine steward/manager of a divine little bistro called Hyde Park.

He teaches me to smell the woodyness, and taste the hits of various fruits and flavors in all sorts of wines and champaignes.

Its oh so fun, but not something I can do often enough to gain any adeptness.

I shall muse on your contemplation of pets and hamburgers for days.

-Heres to you my friend. (Kel raises her cranberry juice and smiles)

Teri said...

The beverage container is important...but for me, the key is ice. With ice? Without Ice? How much ice? Ice is nice.

So, do I ask the beverage of choice, the glass...or the ice?

Somehow I think I just made "life" more complicated. :)

Ciao chica...great post.

Writer Mom said...

I have no idea what I'm going to eat for supper now.