Range lights are two lights, separated by some distance both vertically and horzontally, which line up when the viewer is "on the range". They are used by those operating ships to line up on a course which is known to be safe (ie. deep water - no shoals). As the lower light is closer to the viewer than the upper light, one knows intuitively that if the lower light is to the right of the upper light, one is left of the range, and vice versa.

It seems to me that this has some deeper meaning. If one could only find the range lights of life to line up on, then one could avoid the shoals. It has been said that "Sailing the world's oceans is no big deal, you just have to watch out for the thin parts at the edges."

I once said that if I could talk with God for just one minute, I'd ask him to install little blinking lights - one red, one green, in the corner of my eye. That way, when I looked at something, he could indicate to me via the lights if the particular pleasure I was eyeing was a good thing or a bad thing for me. (I'd clarify with him beforehand that red was for "bad", green is for "good".)

Absent any cosmic indicators, I continue to fumble through life, like a blind rat in a mystifying maze, forever destined to bump my nose into the next wall, and unwittingly miss the corridors which would lead me to the cheese.

talking to G'd

a short exploration of Uri, post Davka
Uri is alone. He is torn apart. He has burnt homes and killed. Now he has finished, and rests, alone, in a disused building.
URI: I can't believe you're G'd.

G'D: You want to see a miracle.

URI: That's not what I meant. Well, it is - but I don't suppose you would.

G'D: Ask yourself why you suppose that.

URI: Well, because you don't really, do you? Not any more.

G'D: Some would disagree.

URI: Well, are you going to?

G'D: I don't need to.

URI: So I was right then.

G'D: You have a question for me.

URI: Of course. I've got hundreds of questions for G'd. All the "why"s and "wherefore"s ...

G'D: No. You only have one. You can't think of any others because of it. It's eating you up, Uri. It already singed your soul.

URI: Is that why you're here?

G'D: I'm here because I chose to be here.

URI: So perhaps I'll never understand what brought you here, but I'm afraid to ask such a question.

G'D: If you don't ask me, I will never answer.

URI: But what if the answer is worse than the question?

G'D: Can any answer be more terrible than never knowing?

URI: I'm afraid of the truth. It might be my fault.

G'D: Ask me what might be your fault, Uri.

URI: I can't. How can I ask? How can I ask you?

G'D: Would I command it of you, if you were not capable?

URI: You might do this to destroy me. This might be my punishment.

G'D: You assume too much. You have forgotten how to trust.

URI: How can I know what you will do? You are the almighty.

G'D: I am also commanding you to ask me.

URI: (pause) My whole family. Every one of them. The shtetl. Dead. Alone. I saw their homes. Empty. Falling apart. Was it my fault? Perhaps I shouldn't have left. Perhaps it could have been different.

G'D: Nothing could have been different. You are Uri. Uri does the things that Uri does. That is the way you were created.

URI: Was it my fault?

G'D: You do not know what you mean by the question. Many things happen that you can never understand.

URI: Yes, but was it MY FAULT?

G'D: This question burns inside you. It will burn your soul.

URI: You've said that twice. WAS it my fault?

G'D: You must control the question. It is good to ask questions. It is not good to destroy yourself.

URI: You won't answer me?

G'D: You have not asked the right question.

URI: So why did you make me ask?

G'D: So that you should know not to ask that.

URI: Should I have avenged them?

G'D: What do you think, Uri?

URI: I was so sure of it. I knew I should kill them - for what they had done. To me. To us. To YOUR people. Was I right?

G'D: What do you think NOW, Uri?

URI: Now I am unsure. I am afraid. Perhaps I did wrong. Perhaps I should not have burnt their houses, and destroyed their lives. Did it do good?

G'D: Your family are at peace.

URI: You didn't answer my question. Did it do good?

G'D: Your family are at peace. Did you think vengeance could change anything?

URI: My G'd is a Jew. Every answer is a question. I don't know the answer.

G'D: Did the deaths of your Lithuanians bring light to my world, Uri? Defend your actions.

URI: It took away some of the darkness.

G'D: At the expense of some of your light.

URI: They deserved to die!

G'D: Nobody deserves to die. Some must. None deserve it.

URI: Then they had to die!

G'D: Perhaps now you are closer to the truth.

URI: They would have kept on killing - if there were any more of us left. They were proud of what they had done!

G'D: There were no more Jews Uri.

URI: Then I don't understand. They had to die. But there were no more Jews. Why did they have to die?

G'D: Because you had to kill them.

URI: And it guts me terribly. I alone must live with this work of my hands. The passion has consumed me. I am spent.

G'D: No man should have to kill. Your part was necessary. You are not spent, Uri.

URI: I am tired, and now I wish to die. I have done my part.

G'D: Your job is far from complete. There are things that you must do, Uri. The killing is ended, but you are not.

URI: Why? Why did it have to be like this?

G'D: You could never comprehend the answer.

URI: So there is an answer.

G'D: Of course there is an answer. Many answers are simple. Not all answers are simple.

URI: That's a cop out.

G'D: You are in a battle, Uri. You have fought in many. A general sends his men to fight. They will never know who was intended to live and who was intended to die. It was all planned. Some were sacrifices. It was necessary - to win the war. The general could not have chosen otherwise. Now I am telling you, Uri, that you must survive. I am commanding you survive. Forget why. It is not important to you. Live, Uri. Breathe the air, and rejoice that the air is there to breathe.

URI: What must I do, then? Where should I go?

G'D: Leave the land of your father, Uri, and return to the land of your forefathers.

URI: I am not Abraham.

G'D: You are Uri.

URI: I was never a Zionist.

G'D: You will choose life. That is your mitzvah, Uri. To survive. You will go. There is no other way.

URI: Will I see Alex?

G'D: If you try. Do you want to see Alex?

URI: I wrote to him all the time. He's my friend.

G'D: Do you want to see him, Uri?

URI: I don't know. I'm afraid again. Did he find his Minna?

G'D: Does it matter to you so much?

URI: Doesn't it matter to you?

G'D: He chose to live, Uri. That matters to me.

URI: She's not a Jew.

G'D: The beauty in her soul is not an accident of birth.

URI: So is she alive?

G'D: She is alive.

URI: Should I search for her?

G'D: Why would you do that?

URI: To bring her to Alex. Will I succeed?

G'D: Alex is waiting for you both in the land of hope. Anything is possible in Eretz Yisroel.

URI: I am all alone. What will the future hold?

G'D: Now you have asked the correct question.

URI: Will you answer me?

G'D: No.


written by Instantiator, not Jane Liddel-King (author of Davka) as an exploration of the character of Uri (who he played in the ADC performance of the show).

Log in or registerto write something here or to contact authors.