As I turn the last corner and the finishing line becomes a reality and not an abstract, I sometimes, only sometimes, look for meaning. I showed I had heart by being a socialist at twenty and a brain by being a Tory by thirty. I realised the truth of Horace Walpole’s “Life is a tragedy to those that feel and a comedy to those that think”. Which is echoed by a quote I read the other day ,attributed to Clemenceau “Not to see oneself as a tragedy at twenty is proof of a want of heart-not to see oneself as a comedy at fifty is proof of want of head.”
All of which is reinforced by the remark “You grow up the day you have your first real laugh at yourself.” Fine. So we are to spend the last twenty years of our life giggling in the corner waiting for dementia to take over. Knowing that you are a temporary speck in the universe should come with the first punishment and the realisation that mummy and daddy will not solve every problem and may actually be the problem.
Not taking yourself seriously ,does that mean you are irresponsible to family and society. I think not. Those that can contribute should. We know the way life’s prizes are awarded is a joke ,the difference between a nurse’s and footballer’s wage just one glaring giggle. Dorothy Parker’s line ”If you want to know what God thinks of wealth, look who he gave it to” is scant consolation. Though do riches spoil people or are those that seek riches already fucked?. The Bible is pretty good on the subject.
I could go on. But here are two which may or may not help. A car sticker read “Militant Agnostic-I don’t know and neither do you”. Dear Woody Allen stated” 80 per cent of life is just showing up.” So I’m settling for a few more years of showing up without a clue. And trying not to laugh or cry when I look in the mirror.