Saturday, March 30, 2013

The Old Man and the SeaThe Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Old Man and the Allegory

This book might just be an allegory of Darwinist Capitalism and the survival of the most aggressive and hungry in the world of corporate enterprise and rivalry.

Hey, What's the Big Idea?

It describes what it feels like to have one big idea or to invent something for which the market is not ready.

You struggle and wrestle with your "big fish" for ages, until in your mind you have caught it and perfected the way to reel it in, nobody is watching when you start the journey back to the market, your rivals snipe and question you and your catch, the market stands back apprehensive and sceptical, you never give up even when you're totally broken backed and exhausted, then the sharks start to have a field day pecking at your catch, first tentatively, then more confidently when they realise you're too poor to fight them off, then one day you discover there is nothing left of your catch, your rivals have offered the market an alternative but inferior product, and your wife and children regard you as a failure.

The Old Man and His Chair

Every afternoon, before dinner, you sit shattered and weary in your chair, wondering whether it would have been so much easier to get a job, be a salary boy and do what the man said.

Just before you fall asleep, you wonder if there is such a thing as karma or reincarnation, it would be nice to get a second chance to prove your worth and avoid making the same mistake of believing in yourself, your ideas and your resilience.

One afternoon, you don't wake up from your sleep.

An Old Man, A Big Fish and the Sea

One old man was lucky enough to have another old man with a beard write a book with simple sentences about his life.

That book will have to suffice for the rest of us and our efforts.

We read it when we are too young and don't realise that it might one day describe what has happened to those of us who are brash enough to have big ideas.

It's just a book about an old man, a big fish and the sea.

For Brian

"When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in confederacy against him."

Jonathan Swift


The Clean - "Fish" (Live in Brisbane)

The Clean - "Fish" (Live in Wellington, NZ, 2007)

Just to prove that people can be genuinely inspired by fish, with or without psychedelic drugs.

View all my reviews

No comments: