I saw the small cc scooter make an impossible looking u-turn on a caotic Istanbul street which is famous for its lawless minibus drivers. The young rider looked so confident as he dived between busses and cars, zipping near pedestrians. In 100 meters he managed to brake a dozen laws, before locking his back wheel, sliding to a stop next to another biker, his buddy. Unlike the scooterer, the rider of 125 cc racer did own a helmet, only to protect his right elbow. Both mirrors were closed for aerodynamic reasons. Young men exchanged grins and without a word took off, full throttle into the traffic, racing, seemingly like playing a computer game.
Witnessing this scene, which is not really unusual, I somehow started imagining a world where the Creator was actually interested in teaching its subjects right from wrong. For every wrong doing we would be given a real time negative sensation, for any good deed a positive one. What kind of riding behaviour be possible then? It would be like a life as a learning ground, rather than a testing ground without proper instructions. We would be encouraged or warned at that instant, just as any good teacher would do, without the need of a doubtful judgement day to learn how we did overall.
The creator obviously has other ideas or occupations or is or isn’t… We ourselves have to figure out learning. How will those hot shots learn, for example? By crashing, getting hurt, hurting someone? How many near misses, accidents will they need? Almost certainly, they will quit riding before accepting their own responsibilities. Blame the bus, the pedestrian, the dusty road, anything but own choices.
Is this still like the wilderness, where the stronger and wiser is supposed to survive but others perish ? If so, evolution doesn’t seem to be working right. The majority seem to remain dum and the wiser are no where near critical mass.
Most people are students for much longer than a decade but never even understand the learning process. Education makes sure that we believe learning is for diploma only and we suck at it. No wonder most hate learning for life.
I wished I knew a way to reach out to the hotshots that day. A way to explain that learning from other people’s mistakes was far more easier than your own trials and errors. That the road they wanted to cover was much longer than that strech of street and it looked more like endurance than sprint if they wanted to call it a race. That they needed to develop systems for doings things right, with efficiency, with fun and fulfillment, let it be at riding a motorcycle or taking orders at Mc Donald’s.
And then of course I have to ask the difficult question. What could I learn from the young and restless, other than the fact that I used to be one? Maybe to remain a bit bold and brave, in search of the new and that without any kind of risk, there is no way I can leave my armchair and learn any further.
posted byHakan Erman