Imagine a puddle waking up one morning and thinking, ‘This is an interesting world I find myself in, an interesting hole I find myself in, fits me rather neatly, doesn’t it? In fact it fits me staggeringly well, must have been made to have me in it!’ This is such a powerful idea that as the sun rises in the sky and the air heats up and as, gradually, the puddle gets smaller and smaller, it’s still frantically hanging on to the notion that everything’s going to be alright, because this world was meant to have him in it, was built to have him in it; so the moment he disappears catches him rather by surprise. I think this may be something we need to be on the watch out for.
I am reminded of Stanley Kubrick's quote about mankind and its utter helplessness here.
It's not as bleak a prospect as it seems, though. Jacques Tati's extremely amusing and warm film Mr. Hulot's Holiday has an extraordinary sequence. The bumbling endearing protagonist, Monsieur Hulot, is painting a boat standing close to the water on the shore. The can of paint is by his side, and Hulot unconsciously dips the brush into the can after intervals. Unknown to him, waves come and go, carrying the can away with them and then returning it just in time for Hulot to dip his brush. Now, Hulot might not have been painting that boat by the seaside and still the tides would flow as they do. Yet chance, in all its magicality, places the can appropriately when the need arises. That is also true of our existence: we have been fortunate. (Talking of Tati's film, please read Roger Ebert's touching review. It's a must!)