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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Saturday, April 20, 2024

A Jumbo’s Journey: Dabbling in some tomfoolery

A Jumbo's Journey.png
Graphic by Rachel Wong

My friends think of me as a modernized, reincarnated Plato. My philosophical mind has been compared to Kant, Aristotle and many other great philosophers. Oftentimes, in the hallway of Hodgdon Hall 2.5 (the floor I call home), we debate and converse about the values and ethics of life into the wee hours of the morning. We’ve disputed whether or not economic recessions are self-imposed by bearish investors and the Federal Reserve. We’ve discussed new, innovative ideas that would not only enhance our floor’s well-being but also the world’s. We’ve created new philosophical theories such as the Westin Theory, not to be confused with Westin’s Theory. 

One topic that has etched itself into my mind is the theory of silliness, of tomfoolery and whimsy, of a little bit of dubiousness. I know I’ve matured since I can admit to myself and to society that I am a little silly at times. While in high school, silliness and tangential forms of expression were dejected and taxed. But now, I can say that myself, and many of us at Tufts, dabble in some tomfoolery here and there.

Contrary to my previous column (which you should definitely read), I want to write about silliness and spontaneity and how they can be intertwined with seriousness and consistency to create a harmonious, balanced existence, enriching one’s experience with joy and purpose. Below are the voices in my head supplementing this argument in a Plato-like dialogue.

Demeter: Socrates, amidst the hustle and bustle of this marketplace, how can silliness and spontaneity dance betwixt the earnest transactions? Seems like an unruly distraction from the serious pursuit of these noble, honest vendors.

Socrates: No, Demeter. Spontaneity is the wellspring of creativity. The ignition of adventure.

Demeter: Yet, should we not prioritize seriousness in our life endeavors?

Socrates: Seriousness without silliness is monotony. Spontaneity enriches our lives with joy and wonder. In embracing silliness and spontaneity, we unlock the fullness of humanity, immersing ourselves in vibrancy and meaning. It is an essential part of our journey.

Demeter: You’re right, Socrates. Let us trifle in whimsy and capering actions.

[With a nod of agreement, Socrates and Demeter clasp hands and go frolic in the fields, fully embracing life’s silliness and buffoonery].

As Socrates declared, life is monotonous without a little tomfoolery here and there. And, of course, that correlates to all of our lives. There are many people who go through college, and life, like a computer. They edge their way through each day with schedules outlining every minute, and the most exciting part of their day is drinking a warm glass of milk before bed.

Having a ‘yes-man’ and ‘always being down’ mentality for the beginning of my freshman semester has set me up to break this mold. I can honestly say that I am a part of a diverse array of fun clubs, have met so many wonderful and interesting people and have found myself surrounded by non-player characters in Dewick at the strangest hours of the day.

In essence, embracing spontaneity and silliness will provide a balanced existence. And I know that being spontaneous is hard, and this may sound contradictory, but it is an essential part of having a constant life. As I’ve journeyed from the price of high school silliness to college hallway philosophical debates, I’ve come to appreciate the profound contentment that emerges when I dabble in tomfoolery.

So let us trifle in whimsy, let us be a little dubious once in a while, and let us engage in capering actions. Let us go forth with an adventurous spirit and an open mind ready to seize spontaneous moments and opportunities. In this crazy little thing called life, it is the moments of silliness and spontaneity that enrich our lives and remain in our memories the longest.