Alas, yours truly has succumbed to a rampaging case of nap/sugar/vacation-fueled insomnia, so here’s a middle-of-the-night video for you: Gary Oldman and Tim Roth duke it out in a kinetic bit of verbal sparring, from Tom Stoppard’s weird but funny 1990 re-imagining of Hamlet, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead:
Who’s a spoiled brat? You are.
So am I. Everybody is.
Consider how infinitely blessed our lives are. Even in the midst of recession, illness, heartache, and all the other “slings and arrows of outrageous fortune” and “the thousand natural shocks that flesh is heir to,” at any given time, we still enjoy more blessings than we could possibly count.
Fairly few major advances were made anywhere worldwide for hundreds and even thousands of years, compared to the those made during the lifetimes of many still living. Any of us, right now, could go to the nearest grocery store and find a wider variety of fresher food, for a relatively lower cost, than would have been available anywhere in the world a mere century ago. Widely available electricity, air conditioning, indoor plumbing, antibiotics, and refrigeration alone make the last few generations especially blessed, compared to all the rest of history.
We take for granted a standard of living superior to that of royalty throughout most of world history. We’re constantly surrounded by such a bounty of wonders that, for anyone reading this, our everyday lives would have seemed miraculous to our grandparents when they were our age, and impossible to their grandparents at any age. Throw in our vastly advanced achievements in transportation and communications, and we actually live lives richer than those of the gods of ancient mythologies.
But does this make us spoiled? Absolutely. Continue reading