In New York City everything is a competition. Nothing fun can be had without sacrifice. Last Thursday looked like a lost day. I had arrived at Central Park to wait for "free" Shakespeare in the Park tickets at 9:30am. The Public Theater releases the tickets at 1pm. By 9:30 in the morning the line for tickets was at capacity. I woke up at 7:40am on my day off for nothing. According to the Public Theater Line monitor the line was basically full up by 7:00am. For free tickets to a show by a playwright most Americans loathed to read in high school.
What to do with my day? A smart person would have gone home and worked on her many artistic/career projects. As proved by my Shakespeare in the Park experience just minutes earlier, NYC is one competitive place and if I want to succeed I better get to work. But if we learned anything about me from the Shakespeare in the Park experience I lack a real competitive drive. So my friends and I went to the Museum of Natural History and took in the "EXTREME MAMMALS" exhibit. I saw a toe fossil from a four legged mastodon/elephant type creature that was as big as half my body. I saw a land walking whale. I saw the shell of the giant predecessor of the armadillo. The shell was big enough for small children to crawl through. CRAZY! EXTREME.
I learned that one of the most extreme mammals was the homo-sapien, aka the human. We are one of the only mammals to walk on two legs without hopping and we have a huge brain relative to our body size. But the museum missed something. We are the only mammals to video tape cats and post the videos on youtube.
I also learned that no matter how hard a species competes it will one day become extinct. In fact sometimes being so good at competing winds up being a species demise. If you hunt all the prey you have nothing to eat. If you get to the Delacorte Theater in Central Park at 3am you'll probably catch a cold.