Butterflies, Beaches, and Buttercups – Guest Post by Tony Kohler

Chapter 4

(And now for something completely different)


This day and age, anatomical modern humans need to rest from time to time and take a break. The act of stepping away to “reset” your mentality is vital to a healthy human. I am not only referring to the physical benefits but the mental benefits as well. After all, just a few decades ago, humans used to chant “Sticks and stones may break their bones, but…” well it now finishes with, “Words will hurt my feelings.” So, we are going to take a time out. According to the immortal words of Briar Rabbit, we are going to “Find our laughing place.”

What is a laughing place? When a human is able to relax to the point they are able to laugh, I am referring to the type of laughter that tells your part of the world that you no longer have a care in the world? The ability to let go, and be genuinely happy. It is in the capacity for humans to be happy, I have seen it. So, we are going to attempt to locate your laughing place, here we go.

I want you to close your eyes, well not literally, because you will not be able to read. Let’s try this again, I want you to figuratively close your eyes. Take a deep breath and work with me here. You are walking out of a forest. As soon as you step out of the forest you are on a beach when a cool breeze hits you. The salty scent of the ocean fills your nostrils. Opening your eyes, you are greeted with waves, gently crashing on the sand in front of you. Take another moment to close your eyes again as your step out of your sandals welcoming the cool sensation of the sand settling around your feet. Flexing and gripping your toes in the sand you can feel the stress begin to melt away.

Movement catches your attention as you turn to see a crab stop and turns towards you, he pauses to assess you then back into his hole in the sand as it goes to bed for the day. Time slows down as you continue to breathe in and breathe out the ocean air. The morning sun starts to warm your cheeks as you suddenly feel the ocean water wash up onto your feet then back to its depths. Your feet sink into the sand causing an involuntary smile and more flexing of your toes. It is a good morning, but if beaches are not your thing, perhaps something different is needed.

Okay, try this.  Imagine your eyes are closed, you step outside and feel the morning dampness on the wooden boards that make up the deck. The cool feeling of the morning moisture is a refreshing on your bare feet as the mockingbirds fill the air with their songs. You open your eyes, the bright clear skies cause you to wince for a second, as you recover you notice the cool breeze sweeping across the open fields. The tree line waves at you as if telling you that life is alright. In the corner of your eye, you catch a slight flutter of movement.

Walking off of the porch, your feet hit the dew covered blades of grass. Making your way around the side of the cabin, you see open fields that seem to stretch for miles. The green stalks of grass are freckled with yellow dots of buttercups. Movement again catches your eyes as you watch butterflies fluttering from one flower to the next, living a carefree life.

Perhaps these options were not for you. The planet Earth is an amazing place filled with beautiful locations a human can escape to. There are the rainbow mountains of China and Peru; as well as the rolling, colored hills in Iraq. All beautiful layers of different colors of sediment rock that make you feel that you have run away in a Dr. Seuss storybook.

If the high desert mountains are not your first options then you should head off to witness the endless rainbows of the Iguazu Falls, Brazil or Argentina, depends on who you ask. Or head to the Canadian, American Border and witness the raw power of the Niagara Falls. The roar of the falling water will sweep your mind away from all of your troubles.

An idea to find a laughing place is to escape the modern world. Step back in time to walk the grounds of Middle Ages and the castles that still stand. Whether you are in the highlands of Scotland at the Tantallon Castle or escaping to Japan to the Matsumoto Castle and the beautiful moat that surrounds it. Taking a step back in time and letting go of modern technology is a great way to begin to unwind and relax.

Are you still in your laughing place? Take another moment if you need it. When you’re ready we can get back to discussing humanity. If the pit of your stomach just dropped, you may not be alone.

The big question here is why, when the realization occurs to you that you have to go back, a dark cloud forms in your mind and your stomach tightens up? This phenomenon happens to AMH’s all over the world, of all ages. Have not humans chosen the life they live? I realize that some humans like I mentioned in an earlier chapter about the refugees that are fleeing the Middle East like rats from a burning ship are still looking for a place to call home. A place where they can feel safe. As for everyone else, this phenomenon of your stomach turning when you have to go back to where you call home is a mystery. Or is it?

Now when you close your eyes and look to your laughing place and, when you look at the locations I have mentioned earlier, you will see that they all have one thing in common. More often than not, they are absent, void of humans. The one other thing these locations most surely have in common is the fact they are protected from being defaced and or litter. In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson of the United States of America, created the National Park Service to maintain and protect natural landscapes throughout their 50 States. It was President Abraham Lincoln in 1864 who sign the very first grant to create the national park in Yosemite, California, and Nevada.

Looking at the world picture, there is the UNESCO or United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization that protects world heritage locations and natural wonders all over the planet. They use the power of education and freedom of information to establish and recognize these locations for AMH’s to enjoy. This organization also trace their origins to President Woodrow Wilson and the League of Nations in 1921.

Starting with one possible cause with the gut turning phenomenon. First, do not close your eyes this time, walk around your neighborhood? Is trash thrown around on the streets? Are houses and yards not kept up? Why do humans not take pride in their immediate surroundings? Is that also written in the human genome and why they require a world organization to protect parts of the world from them from having the innate need to leave their mark wherever that travel to?

I mentioned in the first chapter, Humanities History, that when Rome fell, the general human wanted nothing to do with anything that could be related to anything that Rome accomplished for a thousand years. The concept of running water was forgotten, the streets became littered with trash of all kinds. All this opened the door for rats to roam freely throughout the streets bringing with them fleas and the Bubonic Plague. This plague nearly wiped out 80% of Europe from Italy to Norway. I would imagine that if a human took a vacation away from humanity during the dark ages, that when the time comes for them to return, they too would experience the same gut wrenching feeling that modern humans feel.

The invention of the first rubbish bin was in England in 1875. Ten years later the United States of America began using them and it was not until 1914 before it became a regular practice. In many cities, all over the world have instituted fines if someone is caught randomly tossing trash on the ground. Whatever the fines might be, still humans disregard these penalties and lazily and with zero regards for their fellow human and randomly discarded their trash.

Who reading this remembers the cartoon where the resident bears of a national park are tasked with raking their section of the park before they could eat? In this cartoon, all the bears rake their leaves into one of the bear sections of the park and then hurry to eat. Raise your hand if you remember this cartoon. It would appear that this day and age, humans are more than willing to let someone else take out their garbage instead of keeping their own house clean.

But this chapter is not about trash, it is about humanity.

So, back to your neighborhood. I have mentioned earlier that humans have this need to leave their mark wherever they go. Here we come to the second possible reason for humans to feel their stomachs turn when they realize they have to leave their laughing place. Up until 1960, humanity left its mark by building something. First, it was giant megalithic structures like I mentioned in the first chapter, then it was the great castles of the Middle Ages and then the skyscrapers of the Industrial Age.

Of course, before the knowledge base was there, prehistoric hominids painted on rock faces. In later years, the Egyptians painted colorful hieroglyphs on constructed buildings, and in the 1960’s, someone decided to take a can of spray paint and leave their mark on the side of a building in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States of America.

AMH’s have gone Turk 182 with their spray cans and have started tagging buildings and anything they can reach. These designs have become more and more elaborate as we approach the modern day. Graffiti has been known to have secret codes designed in them to warn rival humans of whose domain they have entered. Either way, instead of cleaning the wall to start with a blank slate, they just add their mark. The end result is a series of collages of urban, miscellaneous, secret coded messes. Since most graffiti is done at night, you can even call it the urban version of crop circles.

Much like littering, this too has financial penalties with the law, that humans disregard, if caught. However, in the country Singapore, if you are caught spray painting a building you will not only face the cost of repairing what you have damaged, you will also be subjected to public caning. Singapore will be the cleanest City/Country you will ever get the opportunity to visit. Pause for the purple brain dust.

Do you miss your laughing yet? Take a moment and visit it again, I’ll wait.

Time to return to your home. I know, but it has to happen. The third possible reason for your stomach to drop at that thought is safety. When you are at your laughing place there is very little, if any, human interaction. Whether it is road rage, self-deserving customers, or over ambitious, thought they were your friends, associates. These concepts are all part of human nature. They are unavoidable. However, humans in some countries are better than others. I have observed humans in their natural habitats from all over the globe. If you are experiencing the above issues where you live, then your country is not a pleasant place to be.

I can hear the audible gasps now.

Not trying to be funny here. After all, all around the world, there are masses of humans trying to relocate their residence to a new place so they can feel safe. When it comes to one family to move to a new place, it can be an easy transition. It is a different story when thousands of families are attempting to do it. It is not like it was in the 1800’s when tens of thousands of families got on ships to head across the pond and see the new world and start a new life. There is no place on Earth that can support a massive migration that is occurring throughout the world.

Feeling safe is the fourth and final reason that an AMH would reluctantly head home to play their role in society. No other species on the planet disregards its own species at the level that humans do.

There is an old English Navy saying that a person is three sheets to the wind when they refer to someone who is drunk. The old navy ships had three masts, a forward mast, main mast and aft mast and when they were loose, the ship would rock back and forth, much like a drunk sailor. When you are asked how many positive humans does it take to get a society moving forward, the answer is three. However, just like this ships, it only takes one anchor or in this example one bad person to keep the society from moving forward. With the current mental state of humanity, there are way too many anchors and not enough sails. It is no wonder that AMH’s do not want to leave their laughing places.

They say if you love what you do, you never work a day in your life. The challenge humans have now is that they have to invest tens of thousands of dollars to graduate college with the anticipation of working in the field they earned their diploma in. Eight times out of ten, this is just not feasible. So, humans are immediately settling for the first employment that can get, in order for them to survive. Much like I talked about in Chapter two, currency plays such an important role in human society that ideas and goals will take a back seat if it means surviving.

I will go more into depth regarding money in a later chapter, for right now let’s head back to our laughing places because we are about to go to war.  




Tony’s first book The Quixotic Faction was released in January 2016. Since then he has been working on sharing his insights through Anthropology. He considers it the best way to share what he has seen. Tony considers himself a simple man who enjoys time out on his small boat doing what should be the only form of trolling.



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