Posts Tagged ‘ global socioeconomic interdependency ’

what if

Jonathan wiped some froth from his lips with the back of his hand and set the glass down on the lacquered bar.

The play unfolding on the LCD mounted over the bottles on the wall went badly for their team and Marty groaned while lifting his bottle.

“Sometimes I can’t believe how lucky I am,” Jonathan began to say. “Look at this. I’m sitting here, having a nice cold one, and in a few minutes I’ll head home to Gracie and the kids. We’ll all go to bed without a worry in the world. I smile, man. I smile when I’m laying in bed trying to get to sleep because everything’s so good. The worst thing that happened to me today is that he missed that pass,” he said, gesturing toward the replay on the screen. “I’m blessed. In fact, I’m starting to feel bad about it sometimes. I start thinking about my place in the world. I mean, we’re not rich or anything. Not by American standards, but even in America–even in this city–there are thousands of people who don’t have anything like the life I have. People without education, without money, no place to call their own. No sense of security, you know? And then there’s the rest of the world. There’re war zones. There are places in the world where little kids spend all day digging through trash to find useful bits of metal to sell. And when I really stop and think about it, I realize it’s not just luck that I have the life I have. And it’s not that I’ve earned my easy life and they haven’t. I start thinking that my life couldn’t exist with theirs. My happiness depends on their misery. The same way my boss can only be at the top of the pyramid because he’s got bricks like me beneath him, I’m thinking I couldn’t be here in the middle if there weren’t poor families all over the world without anything resembling a chance. You know? That’s what gets me down. That’s all that does. I find myself just wishing I knew a way for everybody to be as happy as me, you know? It’s like my only problem is the guilt.” He inhaled deeply and turned the glass between his thumb and forefinger. “You ever feel that way? You ever start to feel guilty? Just wishing that others didn’t have to suffer for your prosperity?”

Marty took a swig.

Without turning from the screen, he said, “Fuck, no.”