Monday, March 17, 2014

Us And Them

My head has been full of Venn Diagrams lately. It's something that you may not think about much, unless you spend a lot of time in an elementary school. I belong to that set of humans who make those pictures in their heads. There is an overlapping circle of people who used to think about such things but have forgotten what that means. I live in the intersection of those two groups called California and Colorado. It's nice to run into some of that same type of person every now and again. We can compare notes on why we chose to move from here to there. What we miss. What we're happy to be free of.
Adults: married or single, with or without kids. You can have more than two circles. It makes things more interesting. I have found, over the years, that I have more in common  with parents than I do with married people, but I have a crazy hard time comprehending the lives of single parents. Maybe this is why the world is such a curious place.
One might imagine that geography would be enough to bring a group together. As it turns out, that doesn't seem to be the case. As far as land masses go, the Middle East is incredibly overlapped, with dozens of different cultures and religions stacked up on top of one another. The topographical features don't seem to be enough to keep them from fussing with one another. It reminds me a bit of the playground back at that elementary school I mentioned. All these kids come from the same neighborhood. They eat the same breakfast and lunch. They have multiple opportunities each and every day to find ways to become more familiar with one another, and yet I still end up with two fourth graders from the same class shoving one another because of some perceived slight.
It's so much easier to be oppositional: boys versus girls, left versus right, America versus the Taliban, Russia against the Ukraine. Maybe we should spend more time studying the overlaps.

1 comment:

Dan said...