The mice who lived in a certain wood were in constant fear of the weasels, who hunted them for food. At last the mice held a council and decided to declare war on their enemies. "But friends, listen to me!" cried one mouse. "To be a real army we will need commanders to lead us." Mice on all sides clamored for the honor, and the bravest were chosen by vote. And the mouse who had been clever enough to suggest that an army needed leaders was made the general.
Then this mouse spoke up again. "It's only right that all the officers should wear uniforms, so no one will mistake us for common soldiers," he suggested. Everyone agreed, and the mice fashioned tall straw helmets for the commanders to wear. The general's helmet was crowned with bright red plumes.
The mouse general sent a challenge to the weasels, and soon the day of battle came. The mouse army hid themselves in the tall grass, planning to ambush their enemies. But the weasels easily spotted the plume of the general's helmet waving above the grass, and they pounced. Shrieking in terror, the mice ran for their lives.
The general fled with the rest, but when he dived headfirst for his hole, his straw helmet was too big to fit inside. The common soldiers managed to dash to safety, but the general and all of his commanders were devoured.
Don't sacrifice what is practical for the sake of pomp and show.
As I read it, I thought to myself, "So what if the general has a huge helmet? He is the leader and therefore has more power, so he can have all the luxuries." But at the end, it was really that huge, luxurious helmet was his undoing. Because he chose to wear a helmet so pompous, he was easily spotted. In real life, I have seen many people that have been so self-centered. Maybe it wasn't something that caused them to be eaten, but it has made them into spoiled brats, who think that they are better than everyone. Some examples are celebrities that have 10 cars and a huge mansion. Those people lose sight of what is really important in life like friends and family and what is practical like buying a small sedan or Prius instead of buying a 4 ton Hummer that guzzles up 30 gallons of gas an hour.
I also feel that I could really connect to this story. I have, along with all these celebrities, wanted something fancy or expensive, whether it is to show off, or have a lot of fun. But when I get these things such as new video game, everything else usually fades away for a few days. I eat junk food, which is not healthy and I don't talk to my parents since I am so absorbed by the new thing, which isn't going to help my relationship with my parents. I'm not saying that my relationship with them is bad, but I'm just saying that, since we're a family, we should communicate more. It is natural for people to want things that are fancier than what we need, but when we go overboard, we risk the consequences of losing practicality.
Another viewpoint to this is something my dad always told me when I was a kid and whenever I wanted something at the toy store or I saw something in a commercial. He would say to me, "Think about this, is the thing that you are buying a necessity or a luxury." I'm not saying I always listened and stopped begging, but the saying stuck with me. Now that I am older, I can realize what it means. Technically speaking, anything can be a luxury from a pillow to a Ferrari, but if you use common sense, a necessity is something you must have to live, like water or food. Everything else is a luxury. But we really can't live like that. The reason our species is so advanced is because we don't live like that. So my dad's saying really was to balance out what we truly need and what we want. Sure, we can buy a few games here, and a car there, but we need to balance between practicality and luxury. The fact that celebrities spend so much of their money on nothing but luxurious really annoys me. .
So, all in all, these mice from the story have taught us a valuable lesson. We might not die if we give up practicality for "pomp and show", but the consequences could be dangerous and we should watch our step, so we don't end up like those poor mice in the story, cocky and pampered, but stupid.