January 30, 2010
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I did something today that I don’t usually do. In fact, I did something today most people wouldn’t think for a split second to do (event though I think they should). During my walk in the ravine on my school’s campus, I stopped for perhaps 15 minutes or so and observed a Red Squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus) eating a spruce cone.
I watched as it slowly ate away the outside of the cone, its modest fury body puffing out to stay warm in the cold winter weather. It then climbed down the tree, perhaps curious as to why I was standing their starting at it, and proceeded back up the spruce tree onto a naked branch. Then something happened that I did not expect.
The squirrel stopped…and just hung out on the branch and stared at me. It was as if it became curious, too, about me. It is easy for me to start anthropomorphizing, but it struck me as something somewhat peculiar. I cannot explain what the squirrel was doing other than just staring at me dead still.
Moments like these in nature often pass us by. Besides, who wants to stare at a freaking squirrel for 20 minutes? Who cares? Why should we do things like that in the first place?
I think the answer lies in our hearts and in our brains. If we use these organs to our advantage…we won’t even need to ask why.