Cleaning out a closet I found an old T-shirt. I have no idea where it came from but it had an interesting, supposed to be funny, quote - “Hog breath is better than no breath.”
Funny, yes, but soberingly true, and started me off on another I-was-just-thinking rabbit trail.
Skipping to the conclusion of several days seeking and sorting out the point - anything and everything can only be measured, defined and/or perceived by some kind of contrast.
In my musings I had a flashback to a recent funny exchange with one of my grandsons - a twelve year old brainiac who is surely destined to be a star of some future debate team. He can argue either side of an issue with fine-tuned persuasive skills. I had picked him up from school and though it was early December, it was a typical Georgia early winter sunny, short-sleeve day. He said, “Man, I would love it if the weather could be like this all the time.”
I couldn’t help myself. I tossed out a challenge. I replied, “Well, if that were a reality, you wouldn’t appreciate this kind of weather very long because you wouldn’t have the hot hot/ cold cold days for contrast. He immediately took the opposing side and proceeded to explain how much and why he would love continuously perfect weather. I countered that all things that humans experience can only be truly appreciated when there is something better or worse to compare it to.
I think he knew I was right but he is not one to stand down from a position he has dug into. As I dropped him off, we agreed to disagree.
In my defense, in the short ride home, I didn’t have enough time to adequately defend my position. I couldn’t bring up a lifetime of experience, beginning with my first dabbling with learning the science of art and that the only way we can see anything clearly is when it is up against something lighter or darker thus a white line painted on a white canvas disappears.
Human nature is pretty predictable. We quickly become complacent and take things for granted when there are no obstacles in our path. When things are going our way, no trials or tribulations hindering our forward progress, we typically and often forget to stop and acknowledge our good fortune and take time to just be grateful.
The old saying, “there but for the grace of God, go I” is easily forgotten when we are floating blissfully above troubles.
If I ever have a chance to bring up this topic with my grandson again I will point out that those cold rainy days we had recently sure made it all the better when the sun came back. And what about those rainy days we finally had after months of endless dry heat?
See what I did there?