Vol. 2, Issue 26, June 29, 2004
Dodo: the Other Other White Meat
The Apesheet

A Diamond in the Too-shiny Sand

Ezekiel F. Watley, Esq.

I was holding one of my infrequent but Vigorously Efficient staff meetings the other Morning; and as was his Custom, Ephram re-positioned himself upon his Couch so as to be very Nearly, though not Quite, sitting upright like a good Citizen. It was that time of scintillating Brain-Storming when we discuss suitable Topics upon which to focus the keen light of our Bright, but unfortunately Limited, journalistic eyes. While news-worthy Subject swirl about us Daily, we must remain focused and True to our chosen topics for the Week: it is, alas, the price of being mere Mortals with only so many Hours in the Day to work. Or repose, as the case may Be.

During this cheerful exchange of Ideas, I was struck by an offhand comment made by my Nephew, in response to a suggestion from Emmett: the lad had opined that we cover the Remarkable arrival of the Space-vessel Cassini at the Ringed planet, Saturn. Ephram, in turn, said he felt that was "Old News." I was utterly Astounded.

"Are we so Jaded to the marvels of the World that we may thusly Dismiss such an historical Event even as it Unfolds?" I berated Ephram. "Good God, lad: better men than We have spent their Lives gazing at the heavens, hoping that through their limited Instruments and philosophical Deduction they might begin to understand a mere Fraction of the marvels now laid before us. What! - Are we then to cast this remarkable treasure Aside?" In response to which, he Shrugged in his inimitable, sluggish Way.

Ephram has a Knack of bringing our staff meetings to a Close through rendering me Speechless and/or apoplectic with Rage; and this day was no Exception. But Zounds! He brings me to a point of Despair. Now, I am a reasonably modern Man: there is Much that our civilization has to be Proud of these days. But among the Dangers we face - and they are indeed Manifold - is that of a Surfeit of Marvels.

Long gone are the days when Edison Electric could cause astonishment in a Crowd by outfitting a young Beauty with Light-Bulbs. Gone, too, are the days when early Movie-Theater crowds rushed screaming to the Exits from the marvelous Motion-Picture of a Train rushing towards them, hitherto unknown Technologies causing Wonder and Astonishment. Advancement has become our new Mantra, and our new Manifest Destiny, such that we are no longer Awed by it, but indeed Expect it. We suffer, in short, from an Abundance of Wonders, such that None seems wonderful anymore. But a diamond is not less Beautiful for being found among a Sea of its Fellows, if only one takes the time to Look.

My benighted Nephew is a lost cause, but I spent yesterday eve in the Park with my great-uncle's old Telescope, marveling at that little oblong shape first described by Galileo so many years ago, and looking forward to the new Wireless Pictures to come from little Cassini. It is a marvelous Age we live in, if only we are willing to See.


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