Friday, 12 July 2013

Battling the Red Queen

I'm a Lewis Carroll fan so, to me, the inference is obvious.  But for the rest of the world who actually have lives, this is how it worked.

The Red Queen is a character from Through The Looking Glass.  She grabs Alice and has her run as fast as she can.  After awhile, Alice asks where they're going in such a hurry.  The Red Queen replies that they're not going anywhere, they have to run as fast as they can just to stay where they are.

Evolutionary theory uses this as a shorthand for predator-prey evolution.  Each of them is constantly evolving to outfox the other but they just end up in roughly the same balance.  Michael Crichton referred to it in Jurassic Park but it never made it into the movie.

Our lives can also use the Red Queen as a shorthand.  Alex is continually finding ways around our precautions and preventions, forcing us to up our game.

The other night, he managed to rip the stuffing out from around the solid foam core of one of our couch cushions while Dave and I were in the other room.  In retrospect, natural target.  It shreds nicely into long fibres, there's the fun of pulling it out of the cushion, it makes an impressive looking pile.

So I spent this morning sewing the zippers shut on our couch cushions.  I took an upholstery needle and heavy-duty thread and pinched the fabric closed over the zipper for all the cushions.  It took me one Sherlock episode, one Babylon 5 episode and one Primeval episode.  (This being able to watch TV on the iPad is fabulous and makes long, tedious tasks much more bearable.)  I suppose I could have just watched two Sherlock episodes but I find I don't enjoy it as much without some space to breathe in between.

I'm sure Alex will either find a way around the seams or move on to something else.  It's just part of life around here.

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