It’s amazing the importance we attach to our existence on planet earth. Especially when in the grand scheme of things, none of us matters a damn. Look. We laugh at the dinosaurs, but the big fellas survived for 350 million years. We’re barely into 200,000 and doing everything we can to cut it short. Opposable thumbs notwithstanding, global warming alone may turn us into toast.
Seems such a waste.
I wonder what will follow, after the sulphur cloud from the tar sands settles and New York joins Atlantis as a memory of the good old days. As selfish and self-destructive as we turned out to be, it seems only right to leave some record of our being for those who’ll pick up the pieces. Maybe they can learn from our mistakes, or be inspired to repeat them.
What will it be?
What single exhibit will best stand alone for all we were and all we never became? What will represent the sum total of what we achieved, the way we went about it and why it went so terribly wrong? After all the wars and nonsense religions, after all the reaching beyond our grasp, what emerges as the all-embracing icon of our brief, painful and ultimately failed passage on the third planet from the sun?
Perhaps our first effort at an escape from it, with Armstrong’s ‘one giant leap for mankind.’ Or Anne Frank’s Diary. How about a picture of the Pyramids or Stonehenge or the ’58 Edsel.
In the ever more imminent end, you have your package for the tiny time capsule and I have mine: