Fang Talks

Blood, sweat and tears.

A non-descript man sat on a park bench, feeding stale bread to fat birds.

‘What is it you live for?’ the man spoke out to the birds. They continued pecking away, unaware that they would soon be unable to achieve liftoff thanks to their unhealthy eating habits. ‘What sense of purpose do you ponder?’
A particularly bad-looking bird cocked its head. Toes it had little of, ugly scars had replaced them. ‘I’m just a bird.’ it spoke.
The man moved his head closer to the flock. ‘So?’ he inquired. ‘That’s not an answer to my question.’
‘You heard me.’ Attitude would have been painted all over the bird’s face if it could express complex emotions. All it could do was meet eyes with the man. ‘I’m just a bird. Being a bird is my purpose.’

A short moment was needed for the man to think of a response. ‘Are you good at being a bird?’ he joked.
‘What does it look like?’ Crumbs of bread fell out of its beak as it attempted to talk and eat at the same time. ‘I don’t feel the existential dread you’re feeling. I’m just a bird.’
‘Tell me then,’ the man requested, ‘Why do we not do as the other does? Why am I not just a man?’ His stomach audibly growled as he hungered for answers. A small portion of the congregation heard the noise and flew away startled.

The bird sighed, looked down at the crumbs it had dropped. It was annoyed. ‘I do bird things. Nothing else. Just like every other bird.’ Soft thuds its beak made against the ground. Nothing in particular was being targeted. ‘The same things every day.’
‘But aren’t people just like that?’ He waved his arms around in the air, sending another few flying.
It softly cooed before answering. ‘I wouldn’t know. I can’t imagine, since I’m just a bird.’
The man lowered his arms to his sides as he tried to ignore the realization that a bird would never be able to give advice to a human. The difference in perspective was just too great.
Patiently it waited, for the man to look it in the eyes again. ‘Try being a bird.’ It shat on the floor and flew away.

Thanks to everyone who’s reading and letting me know what they think, I appreciate it! Remember to always stay honest and critical.
~ Fang


  • 16/05/2016 (2:47 AM)

    Ha! This is brilliant, and what a zinger of an ending. Like Nas, I love the parable here.

    I always find it amusing when people say things like “we’re all just animals” like we’re the same as all of the other creatures on this planet. I just think, okay, then why doesn’t my cat ever wake up in the middle of the night wondering if she’s ever going to make something of her life, or if she would be happier if she majored in something different in college, or what happens to her after she dies?

  • 12/05/2016 (2:45 AM)

    This is a quick and good philosophy piece! Alan Watts, one of my favorite philosophers, would have said that the bird was just birding, but people believe they have to be nouns so screw up.

    Coincidentally enough in light of your story, Watts said that this is pretty much how he interprets the following scriptural verse:

    “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.”

    It comes across as less pretentious when you say it, though.

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