In My Next Life…

…I don’t want to be a penguin. Five minutes spent watching “March of the Penguins” has made living life as a Giant Redwood look more appealing. Seriously – that used to be my worst fear: that I would come back as a tall tree with a lifespan measured in centuries, rooted to one spot while forest fires raged around me and small woodland creatures burrowed around in my body. Unable to speak, or move, or even scratch an itch unless the wind is merciful. But now? It can always be worse, can’t it?

Poor penguins. Whoa, wait – that wasn’t the “mother of all blizzards” already? I think I’ve found hell.

I used to think that if I had to come back to life as some sort of miserable animal – miserable, as opposed to being a majestic predator or a pampered pet – I’d want to be a cockroach. They have a relatively short lifespan. Maybe if I were a really good cockroach, I could work off whatever karma landed me in a cupboard or couch springs, or the back of a TV set, or in somebody’s garbage at the bottom of a Dumpster. My punishment would be blessedly short. But no – not only do cockroaches live for about a year, they can live for a whole week after being decapitated. The only reason they die, then, is from dehydration. They can live for a month without food. Talk about walking around like a–cockroach–with its head cut off!

If reincarnation was an option, but you had to spend your next life as anything but a human being, what living creature would you choose to inhabit?




22 thoughts on “In My Next Life…”

  1. Investment bankers and some politicians are cockroaches? I have been educated…

    Come back as a cat. Either they are spoiled or feral…..

      1. Holly: I think you would make a great cat. Or even a good service dog. That way, when you were upset, you could say “Oh yeah? I’m bitchy today!” (Woof, Woof! Growl! Bark!)

      2. You’re either twisted or trusting, thinking I’d make a good service dog. 😉 You’re right, though. I’d probably just think evil thoughts, like – “Let’s try this back alley, instead, shall we?” Or, “The doggy treats at La Maison d’Haute Cuisine are SO much nicer – you can afford that, can’t you?”

    1. Well, that’s two votes for cat… and they were revered as deities in Egypt… they’re well tolerated the world over, but that probably has more to do with their penchant for ridding the world of rats, and thus cutting down on the Black Death, than on their being adorable.

      Hmm. Come to think of it, cat might be fitting.

  2. Ha, I’d also rather be a tree than a penguin! I like the idea of calm eternity encased in a trunk. . . but ideally with a more patient personality, because as it is, I get bored quickly.

    If I came back as a critter, I’d like to be a rabbit.

    1. A rabbit! That could be fun. Yes, my fear is that I will come back as a giant redwood due to my lack of patience and low tolerance for boredom in this life. I’m trying! I swear!

      Frightful idea, really. Nice view, if you’re a TALL tree…maybe.

  3. Hey Holly,

    I am not sure what animal I would want to be…the ones that I can think of suffers from humans 😛 (Like Dolphins..I don’t want to be captured and set in an amusement park for the entertainment of some other species).

    Cockroaches seems like a good choice. They tend to survive everything (as a species). Of course, as an individual, your life span maybe short.

    Hmm, maybe an ant?

    I have always wanted to see how an ant farm looks like (Wish I had a shrinking ray!)

    1. Fascinating as hivemind critters are to watch, I think I’d rather be a giant redwood, Jeevan. Oh, God, does this mean I’m doomed to spend the next life as an ant, or a honeybee? Okay – if I have to be a hivemind critter, let it be a honeybee. At least I’d get to fly. And also, if I got too bitchy about my fate, I could just sting someone and end it all…

      I probably shouldn’t joke with karma, huh?

      1. It would certainly be cool 😀 (they say plants can think, what do you think? I suppose they don’t have to think the way we think of thinking. Perhaps sentience means something else to them).

        Honeybees are great (Why didn’t I think of that? Traveling from each flower to flower..collecting honey. Must be a wonderful experience).

      2. “Think” might be too strong a word. I imagine it’s an alien, plantlike process that involves some form of sensation – I do believe plants can feel “pain” and obviously they strain towards the sun and reach for water. I imagine their “thinking” skills about on a par with amoebae or jellyfish or lobsters – which is to say that I can’t really relate, don’t have a clue what that process is, and still believe the notion shouldn’t be dismissed and isn’t laughable.

      3. Agreed.

        I was watching a video by ASAPscience. You can check it here: on the topic.

        He talks about Mimosa pudica plants having memory. The leaves of Mimosa pudica plant closes when it is touched(researchers tested it out..and it seems that these leaves adapt and redefine what danger means to them).

        He also talks about trees working together (Team work and so forth..aren’t those the defining attributes of intelligent beings? Do intelligent beings have to move? Do they have to talk?).

  4. Holly, I would say a house cat, they have the life! Easy and can do whatever they want and when for the most part. They live at least 20 years if healthy. And come back for another 7 lives if you believe in that thing.

    1. I’m not sure I think any of us are limited to some arbitrary number. I’ll admit to being heavily influenced by a childhood reading of Johnathan Livingston Seagull. 😉 And having an interest in Egyptology. But I also told my grandmother that she should “come back as” my granddaughter – when I was only four and had never even HEARD of reincarnation (at least hadn’t heard of it, in this life!). It made perfect sense to me at four; why should that have changed?

      Okay – lots of votes for cats. And the idea definitely has merit, even if I have to hunt and eat live rodents. (Yeah, I’m more of a “Fancy Feast” sort of gal, but then again – freedom is good, even if I’m just a pampered barn cat.)

  5. If reincarnation was an option, I would love to be a tiger. Fast and furious. Dangerous and respected. Intelligent and autonomous. Tigers always fascinated me the way they hunted. I want to visit Africa and do a safari to watch them live!!!

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