Lit: Jaguars Ripped My Flesh

by Andrew Keys on March 25, 2010

So the first official day of spring came and went, and let me tell you, I get VERY restless this time of year. It’s a good time to get lost someplace, whether it’s someplace local, some exotic destination, an intense work project, or even just a book.

I seem to have spent a lot of time lost: I’ve been lost in the jungles of South America and Africa, lost in the Arctic, lost at sea, lost in the caves of Kentucky, and even lost atop a mountain I can see from my front door. I’m a master of inept bushwhacking, of erroneous orienteering… The first time, it happened in a department store during the Christmas shopping rush… I wandered off. There were more people than I had ever seen before, and the place was full of shiny stuff that a kid could play with or examine or ignore as the mood struck. I was a cliché. A child lost in a department store during the Christmas crush. But it was like a dream of flight, this small exploratory foray, a heady, soaring sensation combined with the vague impression that everything—the toys, the people, the half-price sofas, the Philco radios, and the blinking lights—somehow belonged to me. When an adult holds a child’s hand, the world belongs to the adult. But for those few minutes, all of it—the whole shiny new world—was mine.

–Tim Cahill, Jaguars Ripped My Flesh.

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