Thursday, August 13, 2015

Salt Pillars

There was a four lane bowling alley in my childhood, the Carrasco Bowling.  It was a few blocks from the house we rented for the summer. The long idle summer of us children. We roamed the Bowling Alley many times, we rented their special shoes and rolled the bowling balls with our two small hands a couple of times. As a child I did not understand why the place was bombed and reduced to rubble before the following summer.

Analyzing the recent past is not easy judging by the discord and vitriol associated with competing narratives. This was the Cold War coming to a theater near me. A few blocks away to be precise. It was a message to the oligarchy said the perpetrators, one of which became the country's president a few years ago. Being the past so nonsensical and so immutable makes me want to find refuge in the future instead. 

May be that was the reason Mrs. Lot was warned not to look back. Six words state what happened when she looked back, yet I found nineteen different English variants, and many pages of commentary on that simple event.

One of them of note:
"But Lot's wife looked back longingly and was turned into a pillar of salt."

where longingly implies the problem was looking at the past, not just back at a physical place.

A pillar of salt, what a great metaphor for the paralyzing danger of dwelling in the past.

There are two ways of avoiding looking at the past. One way is being young and having no past to look at. The other way preached by my father is staying busy,  the opposite of the long idle summer of a child.

1 comment:

Jochen said...

Those who don't look forward to their lunch time soccer games will turn into salt pillars in their office?