Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Wednesday, 8 January 2014
I opened my eyes this morning and decided to close them again. I should have had this mini collapse at Christmas, then I wouldn't have had to do all that cooking.
The boy has just come round, and is presently discussing Antonioni with his Grandma in the kitchen.
Ok, I know he is a film-studies graduate, and has miraculously got himself a job in the industry having only just left college, but John knows how I feel about the tortuous dismantling of hidden meaning and the deconstruction of visual composition that everyone feels they have to go in for if they are seen to be interested in film, so I have left them to it.
"What are you going to do with yourself today?" he asks, "Just cosy up and watch some films?"
A friend of mine - well, more of an old acquaintance really - has just won £600,000 on the National Lottery, and - for once - it has actually gone to someone who can use it. These days, around Bath or London, this sort of amount of money is just about minimum requirement, just so long as he doesn't want to buy a house around here. He has been poor right up until this point, so - at age 60 - this could be a life-changing windfall. Have you notice the current trend for the police to describe personal injuries as 'life changing', leaving you to wonder how many arms, legs or brain cells are missing?
I have been wondering recently which was the event which has changed my life the most, but thankfully I have gone through it so far with almost no nasty surprises of any magnitude, unlike some of the rest of my family. I think of that old Chinese curse - 'May you lead an interesting life'.
The graph of my existence will - with a bit of luck - gently undulate a fraction in both directions until it flatlines, as it must with all of us.
An old girlfriend came into the pub once and castigated me for wasting my life when she found me sitting in the same chair as I had been when she left around five years before. She proudly listed all her manifold achievements during her absence, then asked what - by comparison - I had done during the same period. I found myself lost for words. This was about 35 years ago, and I still sit in the same place in the same pub.
I just went into the kitchen to get myself some more tissue to blow my nose, and the boy again suggested I watch a film.
"He doesn't like the films we watch," said H.I.
"Well why doesn't he watch a Harry Potter then?"
As with the old girlfriend in the pub, I didn't have the energy to remind the boy that I was a member of a Film Society when I was 14, and saw all the films that he is only just catching up on now, about fifty years later. The boy is 21.
Is it really possible to waste time and - if so - do you waste more time staring at a wall than you do staring at a screen?
That house above was demolished about 2 years ago - it no longer exists.