Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Moby Dick

My name is Ishmael.

I know this is silly, writing about a book, but I found the book fascinating. I also found the paradigm in which the book was written, so opposite of ours, that I just had to write about it.... This has very little to do with anything. I just have to share it.

Did you ever get whupped by a goal? I wouldn't have thought of myself as very goal oriented person a long time ago, but I have since decided that I am very goal driven, I just try to hide it from myself.
Anyway, years ago, I wanted to read Moby Dick. No matter how hard I tried, it just wasn't in me. I REALLY wanted to. Too boring, too long, too dull, not high enough on a list of to do's...  When I started feeling brainy a few days ago, I decided to tackle Moby Dick, just to show myself that I could. With less steroids, I could put 2 thoughts together and read a book. Um, Moby Dick was free on my phone...

So I read the book. I found it to be hilarious. If you never want to read it, Here is the whole plot in four sentences: Boy ships out on whaler with crazy captain Ahab. The whale breaks up all the ships. All the people drown. Ishmael gets rescued. Melville drops the final character... the whale. It doesn't say he died. It seems like he just swims off into the sunset. I find that funny. I also think that Melville was being paid by the word. He researched every aspect of whales, even their phrenology! Again, I found that funny!!! Very  thorough research Mr. Melville.

So the book was very funny, and the plot easily summarized... and it is a goal that no longer has me beat.

Probably you've all hit "DELETE" by now, but I found Melville's paradigm on whaling too interesting. He wrote about whales. The crew knew them to be necessary for oil... parlor lights. The take from 1 ship was so enormous that the whales were being way over-harvested (well, we know that now... they thought the supply unlimited... sounds kind similar to today, huh?) I wonder if God doesn't have a similar plan, where oil will becomes a non-issue like whale oil became a non-issue... just wondering... So the culture honestly thought whales mean and pretty dumb. Melville describes the nursing whales in so vivid terms, it seems like he watched National Geographic. Meanwhile, they are brutally killing the bulls, who are intelligently drawing off the hunters to save thee cows... it is so bittersweet reading it.

Once Ian 4, Isaac, 2, their cousin and I went on a whale watch off Portland Maine. The boat crew acted a little strange (way excited) as we left shore. We go to this place, and there were two huge whales. I took the last picture in my camera, they were so neat. Then those two whales played with the ship. it was once in a lifetime incredible. The would swim under the boat and come out the other side. Then they would slap their tails a bit away (you know, like the pictures), and then swim under the boat again. Almost like a dance. it was so fun. It made me believe everything I've ever read about smart endangered whales. they probably PLAYED with us for a half hour, then we went back. The difference in paradigms, that of almost reverence, and whalers 200 years ago was just too interesting ... Had to share it.. there ya go!

Call me Ishmael... No, just call me silly...

1 comment:

  1. Denise,

    This is wonderful. I never even tried to read it. Maybe it is a better time now. Glad you had such fun. Keep writing. You make my day!