Saturday, December 13, 2008

One Wish

I’ve spent quite a lot of time pondering this, as I’m sure many of you have as well at one time or another. If I could have one wish, one impossible request fulfilled, what would it be? Massive wealth? World peace? Super-human strength? X-ray vision? The ability to become invisible at will? Or to fly? Or stop time?

Stopping time is a big one for me. What would it be like to be woken by my alarm on a Monday morning, only to stop time, lay my head back down on my pillow and sleep deeply until I awoke again of my own accord? The power to stop time, it seems to me, would offer endless benefits. Also a lot of scary possibilities, when you really start thinking about the details, but how many of us often wish there were more hours in each day? Stopping time, in order to complete a task, or catch a nap, would surely be a wonderful thing.

But stopping time would be my second choice. The decision I come to time and time again is that if I could have that one wish granted, it would be the ability to communicate with animals, in such a way that we could have a two-way dialogue. In reality, this could prove to be bothersome, as others have humorously pointed out. There’s a commercial where a man is in the kitchen with his talking dog, and the dog just keeps saying over and over “Sausages!! Sausages! Sausages!!!!” And I’m reminded of one of Jack Handey’s Deep Thoughts:

“If trees could scream, would we be so cavalier about cutting them down? We might, if they screamed all the time, for no good reason."

And I know that quote is about trees, not animals, but the point is the same. But since this is a fantasy, and not reality, I would be able to have a conversation with any animal. If I saw a deer about to run across a busy road, I could say “Hey, wait a minute, let me explain cars to you.” The deer would thank me and scamper back up the hillside. When taking one of my cats to the vet, I could explain to them what was going to happen, and they wouldn’t be so scared. When my cats were hungry, I could say “Okay, let me just finish this one thing real quick, and then I’ll feed you.” Or years ago, when I was mowing the lawn and suddenly saw a snake slithering away in front of me, the snake would have understood my scream of terror, and I would have understood his, and we both could have had a good laugh about it. Maybe even become friends.

I could go on and on with all of the benefits as I see them, but I think you all get the point, and there’s no need to drag this on.

So, this would be my one wish. To talk with animals.

What would you wish for?


  1. As I promised to note when something on my blog was not created by me, I should point out that the picture from this post was found on Flickr, and was not taken by me.

  2. I would not wish to talk with animals for fear of their questions. Tis hard enough to answer the simple questions of a child let alone those of an animal. There would be to many why questions...

    Why do you eat animals, why do you use them, abandon some. Why do you poison the air, land and water. Why do you committ genocide on species... Im afraid my human guilt would not like to hear the questions... and the questions would be without end

    I only ever have one wish and that is for my sons father to have life.

  3. psst heres another blogger thats into animals Chris.. i gave the link to urs ...hope thats ok..A'jay

  4. Always looking for more animal rights folks. Thanks!

  5. You are such a beautiful and deep writer. This is my first time to your blog. My one wish would be for all of the children in the world to be loved. No matter what the situation. This could change the world, society and our future adults.

  6. communicating with animals would be so fucking convenient. i've spent a lot of time thinking about that, too. like, explain to the dog: you can bark at cats, in general, and even chase some if you want, but you can't bark at OURS or chase THEM. and i agree with the other person who said the amount of questions would be a challenge. how to explain to all the animals in shelters, or living with wretched owners, that their situation isn't fixable?

    i've thought about teleportation as a super power. being able to go have tea with lucy in new york, then come home for dinner. or spend the day in tahiti, but be back in time to feed the dog. so helpful!

    another one: the ability to know where anything is. it would be useful for small stuff, like your keys or a shirt you can't find, but also for big stuff, like lost kids and pets, or atlantis or all the stuff and people that disappear in the bermuda triangle. that's one of the few powers i can think of that would be just as easy to use to help others as it is useful for me.

    flying wouldn't be that helpful, since without super-strength, i wouldn't really be able to lift anything or anyone large out of harm's way.

    i don't know if i'd wish for my mom to be alive. so much has happened since that wouldn't have happened if she had lived. not that life is better now, but time and circumstance are so fragile and so dependent on each other. god only knows how different things would be if she hadn't died. if i couldn't be sure that i wasn't unraveling the space-time continuum, i don't think i'd undo it. the consequences might be really big.

    here's a wish: to have a bank account, with unlimited funds, that could only be used to vacations. it constantly replenished itself, and could be used for taking or sending other people for vacations. but it can't be used for anything aside from that.

    eh? pretty good, huh?

  7. i have told you before, and the answer is always FLY. i would totally fly all over the place. whether wings or simply magical propulsion, this would be the one power i'd want above all else.

    i totally used to cry as a kid when i realized i'd never be able to.

  8. You were a funny kid though...