The Last Laugh
The mighty wind blows,
the pliable reed bends low.
Bowing or mooning?
The holidays are over and soon we will be back to work or school, and likely dealing with snooty, sarcastic, bullying co-fellows. Unless they have made resolutions to become better people, but you’ve known them long enough to be wary. But let’s say they did no such thing and continue to be the proverbial thorn in your side. What do you do? Seeing as how you have vowed to change for the better, to be less weak and succumbing, to be nice, not naughty, to be gracious in your actions.
Whenever I think of the so-called weak being overpowered by the so-called strong, I am reminded of Aesop’s fable of the oak and the reed. We are taught that it is better to bend and live another day rather than stand proud and be knocked over by whomsoever is trying to floor us. This is a good life lesson, and I see myself as the reed. Yes, I tend to bend rather than stand proud and break. I bend so that I can live another day rather than be obstinate and dead. What is the point of that? Unless you are sure that you can come back in spirit and make things right. That would be good, but I prefer to make things right in the here and now. Even if my enemy has no clue that they are being humiliated it is enough for me to know that they are.
I think of this fable as being more about the wind and the reed.This is what the reed was thinking when it was being blown about. I know because I am the reed. The reed, being pliable, acquiesced when the mighty wind demanded that it bend. The wind, being all brawn, felt triumphant that it made the reed bow low, but it failed to take note of the direction of that bow. The reed, being all brain, bowed as low as possible so that it could present the wind with a full moon as it said to itself, “in your face, blowhard”.
Can you apply a similar strategy with your co-fellows, minus the bowing, if all other traditional attempts at making peace fails? Maybe disarm them with an enigmatic smile and a look that says, “oh you poor thing, you poor, poor thing.” They may become obsessed with the secret behind that smile the way others are obsessed with the Mona Lisa’s. Was that a smile or a smirk? What is behind it? What is she thinking? I’m sure you may be more creative in your disarming measures as suits your case. Measures that involve no harsh words or physical confrontation or embarrassing displays but yet achieve the desired goal, eventually. Measures that will keep those ninnies confused and puzzled and maybe even become a brain worm that keeps niggling at them, until they figure out it is best to behave themselves.
Even though the reed could not whip the wind it triumphed in the way that mattered most, it lived to see another day and had the last laugh. So can you.