So these giant-ass animals are all over the place here in Vietnam. When we first arrived here we'd pass by them with extreme caution, for obvious reasons. But they are the sweetest, most docile creatures you've ever met. And they're living a lie.
Water Buffalo are strong, really strong. Ten men strong. And yet here they are, completely contained by a small rope around the nose.
It's not just the rope, which is threaded through a very sensitive nose that hurts when pulled, I guess, it's that they're also groomed alongside their parents from a young age to tote the line and do as they're told. Don't act alone. Don't challenge your farmer. Don't take risks.
If it isn't obvious, we all have something in common with them, to one degree or another. We're in one of two camps - the camp that never learned what they're capable of and don't really notice the string, or the camp that has seen glimpses of their power before, maybe even lived a life they now miss with a body and mindset they've given up. The second of these camps is the more painful one, because they live miles away from their happiness, but can still see it, taste it, remember it vividly.
Little Vietnamese farmers guide these giant water buffalo around when fertilizer is needed or overgrowth needs eating. The the beasts go unquestioningly. It's a win win. But somewhere in that beast's bones is the power to rip that farmers head off, break the strings and roam free. But it won't. It'll remind itself that life as it is ain't so bad, and who knows what it's like all alone on the other side. Perhaps the devil I know is better than the one I don't.
A beast built for complete autonomy, a fearless master of its domain, living a lie. But we know why. It fucking hurts to tear the rope out. But after it does, after that tiny, nagging burden is removed and the pain heals, he's fucking free. And in that world he crushes life.
Rip Your Mother. Fucking. Rope Out! Unleash your bad self.