Friday, July 31, 2009

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Survival of the Fittest

I remember as a younger child, there was an old lady who used to work for us. This old lady was a proud woman and she refused any form of monetary charity and insisted on earning her pay. She was obviously too old to be doing any housework, but my mother out of pity hired her.

She broke more things than she cleaned.

She was stubborn and refused any form of advise on what was safe for her to do. She did as she pleased, and she expected to be paid for it.

My mum used to grumble, saying that she didn't understand why this lady, whom we were helping was not appreciative of what we were doing for her. I remembered telling my mum that her hardship had led to her to being so. (Such wisdom from a 12 year old....). This lady was a single mother, whose abusive husband had left her and her 5 children many many years ago. She had to bring them up on her own without a fixed income. She had to do all sorts of jobs, ranging from cleaning to plucking chicken feather. It was never enough, but non the less, fed the children into adulthood. If she hadn't been "self centered", she and her children would have probably died, or the children being taken away from her. Hence, I used the word "self centered" in a special context. She did it for survival. Her life had made her into a hard heartened person. She did what she needed to do.

Life is funny in that way. It does reflect Herbert Spencer's and Charles Darwin's economic and biological theory on "survival of the fittest". (In no relation to any form of evolution). As I look at myself now, I think I may have hard heartened myself, and like any mother looking after her young, I will bark and bite to any who poses a threat to our survival.