There are endless quips about getting old. Judging solely by the way I look and feel in the morning as I pry myself from the lair I’m set to illustrate the mocking witticisms. Naturally everything within me intended for mobility aches. If it doesn’t ache it won’t bend – at least not properly. It has been almost ten weeks since I had a haircut. Thanks to the Oreo cookies and Nanaimo Bars from Baker Bob I’m guessing my “physique” resembles something other than a race horse. What however utterly surprises me – because I can’t in all honesty pretend that incremental decline does – is my shameless and seemingly inexorable dedication to habit. More to the point it is my abhorrence of whatever it is that disturbs the daily enactment of my trifling hobbies. I stand firm upon this assertion. Don’t try confronting me with, “Oh, you love it!” No, I do not! I assure you I am perfectly capable to bear the deprivation of disruption.
We’re at the moment recovering from what I might call tumultuous commotion – much of which has to an Olympic degree interrupted my erstwhile unfettered pleasures. One of those popular pleasantries about aging is the precipitous preference for lucidity and predictability. This is nothing more serpentine than a simple path to gratification. When one’s affairs become complicated by intervening disarrangement the reward is not its re-ordering rather its recuperation. That is, the distinction is not so much something new as just getting back to what should be.
Chatting at length today with a crony from undergraduate days at Glendon Hall, the subject of luxury personal affects arose. Though it is not a subject upon which I have dwelt at any length I unhesitatingly proffered the opinion that they are overall a deceit. When you think about it this condemnation is nothing beyond a commonplace warning about bread, butter, salt, olive oil or alcohol; namely, they’re tolerable in moderation but they’re most certainly not about to change the world. Nor should they. But the expectation – whether propelled by appetite or other equally visceral fodder – is that their consumption will somehow alter the Universe. What possible reason is there for a woman to wear a diamond spray? Its government of social and cosmetic status is patent. But contaminated by the imperatives of insurance and safe-keeping; clogged by the implied bidding for inquisition; threatened by the unimaginable necessity of repair – then the perception alters to its own materiality! The world of materialism is by design of the retailers intended to isolate our rationality and project us instead into a realm of dreams.
Rather than descend into an existential analysis of complicated watches, grand pianos or jewellery I confess that the North American luxury automobile is a source of endless amusement even though distorted at times by the necessity of mechanical adjustment. It is evidence of my inability to rise above the historical punishment of materiality that I persist to broaden my familiarity with the latest models of the domestic automotive market. I have auctioned my bling; the grand piano was sold; real estate is but a recollection. There was no familial contest for the trove of parental heritage. I don’t even pine for a new bicycle!
But I adore a smooth, quiet ride in a sound and properly aligned automobile! It is to this zenith of contentment that I have today returned! While I haven’t a well documented incorporation of suspicion I nonetheless hesitate to reiterate the preamble for fear of enlivening it. May I therefore wallow for the moment in the hope that yesterday’s issues have evaporated? As an introduction to the euphoria I concluded my business day (which is to say, grocery shopping) by directing the hardware along its traditional route. I opened the windows and the landau roof. The pending summer air was sublime! The cylinders and leather afforded an inexpressible outing! Things are for the moment at least as they should be!