It's time for another book review. Not that anyone's been begging, knocking down my door, pleading for a hint of when the date of my next review would be. Or what delightful book would be spotlighted so they could beat the rush at the bookstore. I just decided I wanted to highlight another of my favorites and I decided tonight would be as good a time as any. And we all know, it's all about me, me, me! And, of course, this is my blah, blah, blah blahg!
In my socks,"
Said the ox
to the fox.
Whenever one walks.
I feel very grumpy
With rocks in my socks!"
That's how the book starts and it builds on Ox's solutions to get the rocks out of his socks. Sorry to say, he puts more effort into listening to outside sources offering to help instead of really thinking the situation through himself and doing what would be in his best interests. Sadly, (or maybe I should say, 'sorely') by the climax, rocks in his socks is the least of Ox's worries.
However, after taking the long way around, Ox is finally able to come full circle, back to the beginning and, following the advice of another character who has been objectively watching the whole situation, he simply takes of his shoe, takes off his sock and dumps out the rocks.
I remember, too, from my seminary days (which were sketchy at best) an object lesson where we were challenged to go a day with a small pebble in our shoe and then evaluate the discomfort of the day. There are a lot of analogies that can be drawn; a lot of personal things the pebble could represent. My personal representation of what the pebble represents changes as I grow and evolve, too. A mistake, something in the past that's hanging on, a bad habit, a distasteful character trait, a foreboding of something looming in the future, a task I should have done but didn't take the time to do, things that are getting in the way of me doing what I know I should be doing, etc., etc., etc. And no matter what the pebble represents at the specific time, like the Ox, "I feel very grumpy with rocks in my socks!"
The fact that Ox does eventually relieve himself of the pain of the rocks and, at the same time, realizes his folly in placing his faith in misguided (however good intentioned) advice, leaves the reader feeling like there's a solution to every problem. If one is persistent enough and doesn't give up. And, truthfully, sometimes things do actually have to get worse before they get better.
So there's this segment's book review. Definitely a must read!
Reviewer's postscript: In order for me to perhaps validate some of the rogue statements above, in the book "Lift", by Kelly Corrigan, she describes some of the basic theory involved in hang gliding. The author is talking to a friend who says, "Basically, you fly from thermal to thermal, looking for lift." [A thermal is a column of hot air surrounded by turbulence] The author then makes the assumption that you want to avoid turbulence to which her friend replies, "No. Well - some turbulence is really dangerous . . . Turbulence is the only way to get altitude, to get lift. Without turbulence, the sky is just a big blue hole. Without turbulence, you sink." So, there was a reason Ox got rocks in his socks and a reason he went through all he went through to get them out. And, most likely, it's a reason only Ox will understand.