The Grasshopper Is King


Some days everything seems to connect.

It started with a short piece by David Hepworth entitled “I envy the people who stay late at the beach” about remembering as a child “looking out of the window of hotel dining rooms and seeing a handful of kids still out there playing, the whole beach to themselves” and how this was/is probably a common sight because, uncommonly, those still out on the beach late into the day are probably “built for holidays in a way that most of us, sadly, aren’t”.

Then came Tom Meltzer’s piece from The Guardian (from Saturday admittedly) about “the curse of growing up in the social networking generation” (which is I would suggest is less troublesome in many ways than the “the curse of growing up working in a mill for nine hours a day generation”) in which he quotes author Mark Vernon saying that one of the problems of the social network age is that “We don’t really live experiences, we live them to report them. We’re editing ourselves rather than actually being ourselves.” (Which does beg the query why so many “reports” are so dull – and feel free to include me in that.)

Then finally Joe Moran on the ant and the grasshopper, “At the beginning of the financial crisis two years ago, there seemed to be a brief possibility that it might allow us to reassess our priorities and value more those aspects of life – play, pleasure, friendship, free time – that do not show up in growth figures. But now the ants are on the march again, all of them warning that the grasshoppers will die in penury . . .”.

How this all connects beyond the obvious I’ll have to work further on, however I do know that a) I need to make sure I stay out on the beach until everyone has gone home b) I need to remember to live experiences in the moment rather than living them merely to report them and c) the grasshopper is king.

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