Life is like…

Posted in Unwelcomed notions published for no obvious reason on February 2nd, 2010 by Jeppe Grünberger

“Life is like a box of chocolates” – Forest Gump (or actually, his mother)

Admit it, you all thought it when you saw the headline, didn’t you? It’s the sort of sentence that really sticks if for no other reason then because of how often Forest Gump repeats it to us during the film (and probably the book). Of course, it really makes little sense. The punch line  “You never know what you’re gonna get” may be true about life, but it’s hardly true about a box of chocolates. You are almost certain to get chocolates out of a box of chocolates. Then, to be fair, the meaning of the metaphor is more along the line of how one cannot easily judge from the appearance of a chocolate how it’s going to taste. And so it goes to the element of seemingly random surprise that does sometimes seem to dominate life – at least it dominates the life of Forest Gump a lot – and the ability to enjoy it, whatever taste you receive. The sentence also seems to be what saves Forest Gump from the fate of Jenny, who symbolizes her generation much better in her restless idealism, drug abuse and finally to a too early demise. Forest on the other hand embraces passivity and lives exclusively in the moment, reacting to things that happen to him. So, to Forest, life is indeed a box of chocolates. It is hard, however, to claim the same for Jenny’s life. Her metaphor would most likely be “Life is life a broken ladder – one long disappointment”.

Well, when you write things that initially exist exclusively in your head (until you transform them into words and they somehow become living stories that annoy other people), you sometimes wonder about this sort of sentence. The life-metaphor. As it turns out, life it like a lot of things; chocolates, chess, a rollercoaster, a flower and so on. So, this got me thinking about a theme, I would do – a theme of things that  life may or may not be in the hunt for something that life really isn’t. It’s harder than you think, finding something that life really isn’t. Here are a couple of attempts so far:

Life is like a nuclear bomb – it eventually kills everyone.

See? Who would have thought.

Life is like a giraffe, long and useless.

Life is like an iPad, at lot less than you would expect

Life is like money, something you never have enough of and always worry about

Life is like a cheeseburger, addictive and very unhealthy

Life is like a fossilised sea turtle shell, surprisingly ancient and yet seemingly pointless.

I will come up with more useful observations on this subject soon, I promise you.