Predator or Prey?
|© Barbara V. Evers, All rights reserved.|
I've been thinking a lot about the concept of predator and prey, primarily in regards to humans. Think about any creature in the animal kingdom, and you can probably identify some trait that protects them from predators. Animals like mountain lions, bears, other cat species, and wolves have sharp teeth and claws, not to mention their size and agility. Some animals have a hard shell or outer skin. Many have camouflage. Even the giraffes I love to write about have large, dinner-plate-sized hooves which can crush your skull. Not so long ago, I saw a video of a giraffe fighting off a pack of lions with just her hooves. While her baby hid underneath her, I would like to add!
But what about humans? We don't have sharp teeth. We don't have claws. We definitely don't have the power of a hoof. I've seen some people with wicked fingernails that could probably do some damage, and some people learn how to use their bodies as a weapon, but, let's face it, without specialized training, we aren't equipped to protect ourselves against predators.
At least not physically.
What's the difference? Our brains. We have the ability to design and build weapons and structures to protect ourselves. We have the knowledge to develop techniques to fight off another person. We don't fight off large predatory animals in a physical battle if we can avoid it. In many cases, we would lose. We use our brains.
Urban fantasy has experienced a huge surge in popularity for the last decade. Why? Maybe because we are fascinated by the idea of humans (or almost humans) who have fangs or lightning quick speed or the ability to transform into a predator.
As I said, I've thought about this a lot lately and would love to know what you think. Or if you've thought of an animal that has no natural defenses, let me know. I'm curious.