An Ancient Ranting Tablet Found

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
It's good to know that even back in ancient times there were grumpy old men complaining about society.

Submitted: November 21, 2015

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Submitted: November 21, 2015



An Ancient Ranting Tablet Found by Chris Chabot


An archaeological dig in Northern Mesopotamia sponsored by a research firm recently uncovered a fully intact skeleton and clay tablet several layers below the village they were excavating in a lower chamber of a water system.  After two years of translation, the tablet seems to be an ancient memo dated around ten thousand BC.  This is a possible key document in mankind’s switch from hunting and gathering to agriculture and farming; an important move towards civilization.

It seems to have been written by a disgruntled member of the tribe angry over the group changing its lifestyle from hunting to farming.  Here is the translation:

To our honored ruler and valued council.  I write this because things have been coming to a boil like a pot of water that has been left on the fire too long.  I can no longer keep my peace.  I must comment on all the changes that have been going on and what it is doing to us as a people. 

Once we were a strong and proud group of some two hundred souls, following the migration of animals that roamed the land.  Then someone got it in their head for all of us to stay put.  All because he noticed that a bunch of plants we eat were rising up near us.  No one cared that they were rising up in our waste area.  The place where we go to the bathroom!So what if that is where the plants grow.  Why do we have to live near there?

Our young used to run along with us, trying to keep up with the herds and joining in the killing.  Now they sit around all day watching the women plant, while eating the nuts and fruits the plants bear.  They are gaining weight!  We used to have incredibly tough teeth.  Now many of us have teeth that are rotting or falling out!  We never needed a tooth sorcerer before and yet many wander camp demanding small baskets of corn or grain before stopping the pain and poking in everyone’s mouth with a sharp stick. 

We used to be a hardy people, depending on the seasons to subsist.  We were few and poor, but we were rugged and no one would mess with us.  Now we sit and eat off the fat of the land.  We have gone from a few hundred to thousands!  When I stand on a hill, I can see nothing, but huts going on forever!  This is not who we are!  This is not how humans are to live! 

Some of us have made gains from this.  A few have gathered far more grain and meat than others by carving figures out of stone and claiming they have powers.Many in our tribe now desire these.  The other day, my woman said she wanted a small ivory figure like the other women had.  I told her that was nonsense and would take no part in it, but after sleeping on the ground outside our hut for three days, I decided to see Barg, the carver.  He actually had someone standing in front of his hut telling me he is busy.  He had me wait and even had a bowl of fruit for me to eat while waiting.  Soon others were waiting as well and eating the fruit!  I asked for a stone carving and was told to come back Tuesday.  What in the hell is a Tuesday?  I have never heard of that. 

Animals used to live in fear of us and keep their distance.  Now they wander into our village and never leave!  I have seen women stroking the backs of small feline creatures that wander among us and now my woman wants one as well.  I have seen men throwing sticks that wild canines run and retrieve and then they give them some of our tribal animal meat.  This is unbelievable!This sounds like a lot, but I have only begun to complain! 

We used to have amazing story tellers who remembered everything.  Now in our laziness, people are just writing it down on clay tablets.  Our storytellers stumble and they have to pause to look at the tablet before continuing.  One of them has an assistant who holds the tablet for him in case he forgets.  I am sick and tired of hearing our story tellers tell a tale from the past, only to stop and yell “line!” and have the assistant continue the story on the tablet. 

That is another thing!  Our entertainment!  We used to sit around campfires and tell stories to each other: stories of our past, who we are and where we come from.  Now I see many going into one of the large huts to listen to a man who just looks at the crowd, picks out someone and bears false witness against them.  The rest sit in front and laugh at this.  I find it appalling!  Recently a few of these people said one too many false things and were beaten up.  Now they are showing up with a small wooden version of themselves that sits in their lap and does the insulting.  People find this humorous!  I do not!  I got up to argue with the man and was told it was not his fault; it was the small wooden version of him doing that.  So I got closer and leaned into the face of the little wooden version and yelled and all it did was make people laugh harder!

We are forgetting where we came from and who we are!  We are supposed to be running after animals and moving around from area to area as the seasons change!  We are supposed to run from rain and cower in thunder, not just watch it with amusement from the safety of huts!  We need to get back to small groups of 200 people and wander the earth again, feeding off the animals of the land and only eating vegetables and fruit when we are near starvation.

Where will we end up if we continue this?  Our garbage is building up on the edge of the village!  Someone actually came to the tribe and offered to haul it away to a safe place if we would give him more meat.  We are getting lazy.  Others are proposing that we build something so that water comes to us instead of us wandering to find it!  What?  How will we get water to come to us? It is not an animal that can be lured!  It is a river!  It sits there! 

I am going to write a list of over one hundred things I do not like.  I am going to stand up on a hill above the sacred well and shout these out tomorrow.  You people will listen!  We will go back to wandering the land!  We will go back to gathering around campfires for safety and telling stories like we used to.  We will go back to hardships to make us tough!  I will demand we rip up these stupid plants!  I will shout this out tomorrow and I will not stop until everyone is in agreement!

Note:  It is here this historical tablet ends.  The tablet was located deep inside the posterior of the skeleton, which was found at the bottom of an ancient well as if tossed there by a large mob of people.

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