Three Percent

A common refrain heard from guitarists is the repudiation of fanatically pursuing the 'last 5%' or the 'last 2%' (etc.) while expending vast sums of money.  On the one hand, I agree completely. A lot of folks are just into collecting, they have no musical project in other words, and their pursuit of that last X% (whatever it is) amounts to nothing more than fetishism. On the other hand, there's a part of me, the anthropological side, that knows that less than two percent makes all the difference. It comes as somewhat of a surprise for most people when they learn that Homo sapiens (that's  you, fella) are more than 97% genetically chimpanzee. In the words of one famous paleoanthropologist, we are for the most part just "elongated African apes." It's that last one-point-something-percent that separates dumb banana-eaters from astronauts. I'm no biological reductionist, and social organization is more decisive than genetics, nonetheless it makes one pause and consider the vast gulf represented by such a tiny number.