Maybe We Just Need Tails

“Man is the only animal that blushes.  Or needs to”

– Mark Twain

Air, water and food are the metabolic requirements for humans.  Shelter and clothing provide protection from the elements and are strongly desired, but not required for humans to live.  As much as we don’t want to admit it, we are animals.  Sure, we may have split the atom and found a way to put a man on the moon, but we are still just animals.  In fact, there are many humans who have been born with a tail.  Humans have a “tail bone” (the coccyx) attached to the pelvis, in the same place which other mammals have tails.

Sometimes, a child is born with a “soft tail”, which contains no vertebrae, but only blood vessels, muscles, and nerves.  People, especially New Yorkers, like to believe that they are a cut above the rest and that “their” way of life is the best.  But if we slow down to analyze what we really need as animals, not just as the persona that is ‘I,’ then we may see a different side of ourselves and the people around us.

I have written in past posts that people generally tend to not go after exactly what they want for fear of failure.  Instead, they settle for something less, but generally which is also less of a hassle to attain.  How many of us wanted to be professional athletes but realized it was a long shot, so we played in High School or College but then never took the time to hone our skills to the professional level?

How many of us would like to write a book someday but have yet to even write ten pages of that book?  For some, the path of least resistance is to not try at all, and its certainly understandable.  Do we owe more to the part of ourselves that is purely animal?  What would happen if we acknowledged that our needs go beyond generally accepted protocols of interaction?  Would we be happier or less happy?

One thing is for sure.  We don’t really consider ourselves animals anymore.  We take pride in the many ways that we differ from the animals around us.  Whether it being delaying gratification through monogamy or by establishing a 401K, we take pride in all the ways that we are sophisticated, while repressing our animal instincts.

I fully understand all of the reasons that we, as a society and a species, would do such a thing.  The animal kingdom, while filled with honesty of character, is not what you would call democratic and protective of individual rights.  I’m sure a gazelle is not all that surprised when a lion tries to kill it, and a lion never pretends to be anything other than a lion.  It is a killer and unapologetic about it.  In our society, we don’t just say “Tommy is a killer.  Thats just how Tommy is.”  If Tommy started killing our citizens and eating them, we would lock Tommy up.

In conclusion, I think we live in a society where we repress our animal instincts and then like to act surprised when they come out.  I believe there is potential for us to lead happier lives if we own up to the fact that we are in deed animals.  Make no mistake, the answer is not to act with the same reckless abandon as your dog Fido.  The answer is to understand that you and Fido have a lot more in common than you think.   If you give Fido a doggie treat, he will eat it.  If you give him two, he’ll eat two.  So why should you be surprised when you have a hard time eating just one Thin Mint cookie when you have an entire box at your disposal.  You are just an animal and you are flawed.  Period.

Maybe if we had tails, we would better understand ourselves and the people around us.   Maybe we could truly accept each other as our true selves, not just the persona that is ‘I.’

“If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything.”

– Mark Twain

Bright Lights, Big City.


8 Responses to “Maybe We Just Need Tails”

  1. HappyHippo Says:

    “The hippopotamus, he is not born going, “Cool bean, I am a hippo.”

    No way, José.

    So he tried to paint the stripe on himself to be like the zebra, but he fool no one.

    And then he tried to put the spot on his skin to be like the leopard, but everyone know he is a hippo.

    So at certain point, he look himself in the mirror, and hejust say, “Hey, I am a hippopotamus, and there is nothing I can do about it.”

    And as soon as he accepts this, he live life happy.

    Happy as a hippo.

    You understand?”

    -Claude (Along Came Polly)

  2. Boombastic Says:

    So many things wrong in this post.. First, a suggestion on writing 101, when you start a paragraph with a concept, it’s customary to continue with that concept throughout the paragraph.

    Not only does eating two dog treats make the dog happy, but that abandonment of forethought makes her fat with heart disease and rotting teeth. You can look in the mirror at you stubby flesh tail all you want and convince yourself you are just an animal, like that happy dog, but don’t complain to the rest of civilized society when all those thin mints you ate put you in a wheelchair because your puny ankles can’t support you anymore.

    Finally, I fail to see a point in this rambling post. Were you trying to say people should embrace who they are and accentuate the positives of their own individual persona, thus de-emphasizing their negatives and having a happier life? Were you saying we should embrace our animal needs and not put as much weight on the more sophisticated endeavors of man? ‘If a cookie makes you happy, eat more cookies’? Or are you saying, ‘We is jus like de aminals, cool’?

    I can’t really tell where you are going with your ramblings, i’ve heard street prophets that stayed more on point. “Focus” should be written in large letters on a post it note and stuck to your monitor.

    P.S. Can you please get a damn spell checker on you comment system? Where are we 2001 on geocities?

  3. ipzipskip Says:

    A good post.

    Boombastic you’re a moron. Who cares if the spelling is right – not me. The idea is that we need to get closer to nature so that we can understand ourselves, our desires and our needs better. We go along, day to day, without thinking about the bigger picture of the world we live in but it would serve us good to keep that picture in the front of our cortex when making decisions. Thanks NYCity Lights for the only decent blog post I’ve seen so far.

    • Boombastic Says:


      Wow… Read much, my friend? I care if MY spelling is correct. That is why I asked him to put a spell checker in the “comment system”. I understand micro-biologists don’t get out much, but I thought they could at least tell the difference between a comment system and a blog, no?

      And the rest of your comment, I’d say, was a much more clearly presented flow of an idea than the origional post (and I mean the blog post not the origional comment, just in case you were confused). My complaint isn’t about the idea the blog post was presenting, it is that it wasn’t clear what he was presenting. If you took away what you took away from that, good for you. I saw 4 or 5 different things he was trying to say and never did they come together with any focus.

  4. element Says:

    yes def needs to get little more practice in writing. i have similar problems in the article i write called “freedom of speech” couple pointers> open up with first sentence summarizing what u will discuss in the following paragraph. when u are starting a new point then u start a new paragraph. 1st paragraph of ur article/blog/post etc., try to summarize ur whole “story”. or with each sentence of ur opening paragraph relate each sentence to ur coordinating paragraph. liked the ideal. but not in deoth enough. and also could have used some more analogies or similies to help reader relate better. great direction but needs to follow that direction. seems scatterbrained.. thnk u for your thoughts nycity lights…

  5. Fucking Gross ,I’m not suprised the whole word know that crackers are low life animals ! They are fucking dogs and lesser then us humans .
    Ewww I can’t believe my family was forced to be mixed with these DOGS!

  6. Says:

    I always believed we were animals. Since I knew what animals meant. I LOVE to compare humans to animals. I even like to believe we have just a little part of every animal in us. Ex. We have canine teeth. (Dogs) long arms (apes) good balance in two feet (brown bears) we bare our teeth when angry (any ani
    al) we have looong legs (kangaroo) . Just look at any animal. There’s something in common right? “You know, humans are animals too.” I tell my friend. “Us?! Never!!! Were too smart and complicated to be dumb animals.” She said. I have proof, I showed it to her, did anything in my will…. she believed me. But refused to. Why?! Why such embarrassement for being an animal? If people opened their fat eyes to the world, they could see. Oh we humans are the only who can talk! NO!!! DOLPHINS HAVE A SUFIATICATED LANGUAGE EXACT LIKE OURS.!!! WHEN WOLVES HOWL BACK AND FOURTH, ITS NEVER THE SAME HOWL . People just refuse to believe. I’m more than proud, why? I’d give up my life to be an animal… to truly belong to mother nature… we humans do nothing but to destroy our home, to kill the animals who made us possible, and keep babbling how imperfect we are. Screw you…. screw us.

  7. Dan Lewis Says:

    How very sad, that the author will not stand up and identify his/her self. Writers that don’t identify themselves at the top or bottom of the article are ‘shady’ to say the least.
    The article was going so well, until that stuff a the end about us being flawed. Speak for yourself, Author X. Bawk bawk.

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