It is a mere matter
of satisfaction at adjustment to environment.
It is success.
Life that lives is life successful, and success is the breath of its
nostrils. The achievement of a difficult feat is successful
adjustment to a sternly exacting environment. The more difficult
the feat, the greater the satisfaction at its accomplishment. Thus
it is with the man who leaps forward from the springboard, out over
the swimming pool, and with a backward half-revolution of the body,
enters the water head first. Once he leaves the springboard his
environment becomes immediately savage, and savage the penalty it
will exact should he fail and strike the water flat. Of course, the
man does not have to run the risk of the penalty. He could remain
on the bank in a sweet and placid environment of summer air,
sunshine, and stability. Only he is not made that way. In that
swift mid-air moment he lives as he could never live on the bank.
As for myself, I'd rather be that man than the fellows who sit on
the bank and watch him. That is why I am building the Snark. I am
so made. I like, that is all. The trip around the world means big
moments of living. Bear with me a moment and look at it. Here am
I, a little animal called a man - a bit of vitalized matter, one
hundred and sixty-five pounds of meat and blood, nerve, sinew,
bones, and brain, - all of it soft and tender, susceptible to hurt,
fallible, and frail.
Enter page number
Page 6 of 305
Words from 1288 to 1552