Thursday, June 26, 2008

Envira Indians: An Uncontacted Tribe

This is compelling picture of an uncontacted Envira tribe living in Brazil bordering Peru. The picture was taken by a group called Survival to show that uncontacted tribes like this do, in fact, still exist in the rain forests of South America, and they require protection from losing their way of life altogether from deforestation. These are people living, presumably, like they had been living for thousands of years.

I think it's the fellows with their bows drawn, ready to shoot the helicopter with arrows that really makes this picture interesting. There's a strange combination of nobility and comedy. Sure, the arrows communicate the same message an AK-47 communicates: "You're not one of us. Your company isn't welcome. We'll put holes in your squishy body if it steps out of that...flying...whatever the fuck it is." But nevertheless, they're pointing arrows at the steel shelled helicopter, which is probably a healthy distance away if the camera man has any brains.

The arrows are it. Those are the big guns. When the alien invasion starts, they break out the bows and arrows, and maybe spears. This is all perfectly reasonable, and probably more than I'd do. I'd probably just crap myself if a helicopter flew close to my house and started taking pictures of me and my family...and I've seen helicopters BEFORE.

But knowing what I know about stone or wood against steel or even thick aluminum, the futility is tangible and somewhat comic. But in the context of their worlds, an arrow solves just about any threat from animate objects. Shoot the damn arrow, kill the damn bird if you hit it. It works about 100% of the time.

I suppose it's a pretty standard thing to do. Not killing birds, but throwing a successful strategy at a new problem. I figure out a way to solve a problem and I just use it and use it and use it...and it solves the damn problem every time. Then one day the problem changes and I'm not entirely aware of it, and I fire the same solution at it. But this tim, it just bounces off - patoing! Or it makes the problem even WORSE. There's not even an awareness that it won't work. Maybe every time I do that somebody out there is snickering at how primitive I am, cuz to them it's so damn clear that the solution I used didn't match the problem.

I dunno. I just thought the pictures were cool.

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