Archive for October, 2007

Deer that Just Don’t Care

The 405 is one of the most – if not the most – heavily traveled highways in Southern California. And yet, over the last two weeks, I’ve seen deer foraging for breakfast amongst the woods and shrubs alongside the road.

I have three explanations:

First, these might be Aquarian deer. Aquarians, as any of us will tell you, will do whatever it takes to be different. We don’t necessarily dye our hair pink and cultivate social maladaptivity, but if we discover that most people do things a certain way, we will be filled with an instant, and thoroughgoing desire to do them some other way. Preferably the opposite way. Most deer would choose to stay away from a sixteen-lane highway; Aquarian deer would insist on living right beside it, and looking just as unperturbed as their more sylvan counterparts.

Second, as Sam always reminds me, the evolutionary winners will not be those who eat the most organic food – they will be the ones that mutate the most gracefully to adapt to our changing planet. Sam generally reminds me of this theory after he’s been to Smart & Final and returned with a block of orange-colored cheddar cheese so big it could double as a piece of furniture. Perhaps these deer are evidence of Sam’s theory – for a dedicated So-Cal deer, running away from the ever-encroaching traffic is a losing game. The winners are the urban deer who mutate. They eschew downy woodland nests in favor of postmodern lofts, and they put up with the traffic in exchange for better food and nightlife.

Third, maybe Southern Californian deer are on the same spiritual path as Southern Californian people – they go to yoga, meditate, drink lots of tea, say Om, and strive to Respond to the world rather than React. As you might learn in any yoga class, Reacting is bad – it means that you’re letting the world buffet you about. Responding is good – it means that in every given situation you consider your options and make the decision that brings you closer to the light. Running away from the traffic would be a fear-motivated decision, a Reaction. Making peace with the Now, and creating one’s own pocket of calm right next to the highway – that’s a Response. And the sign of a spiritually-evolved deer.

Of course they could be all three – mutant Aquarian deer who are Living in the Moment. In which case, I must ask one if it would like to come live in my yard and be my spiritual mentor.

Add comment October 14th, 2007