mostly harmless  

November 26th, 2009

All would live long, but none would be old.

Benjamin Franklin


For sale: one Louis Vuitton bag from his collection for kittens. Ideal for carrying a pinch of catnip, a bit of yarn or even a small dead mouse. $37OBO. Box 1490.
For sale: walker, barely used still moves well. Used to be a Texas Ranger. $45. Box 1982.
For rent: shoebox, contains no shoes. Ideal for storing shoes. Daily and weekly rates available. Box 22.
I am spending the winter in Arizona this year and need someone to tell me how to get there. It's South, right? Box 110.

Due to technical difficulties Part Thirty-Three of
The Mystery of the Lost Lenore
is postponed until next week.
but you can still
listen to the earlier episodes.



De Senectute*

Nemo fuit repente turpissimus ** - Decimus Junius Juvenalis

One finds, as one grows older (you will notice I did not say "matures"), that one feels, sometimes, the same attractions that one did when one was younger but that these are no longer simple and unalloyed but impulses or urges that carry with them, conditions.

The older an individual gets, the greater is, or can be, some individuals seem wholly immune, the tendency to realise consequences.

One may be drawn to heed the advice of Gene Simmons regarding the ideal timetable for partying and "rock 'n rolling" but one has come, through bitter experience maybe, to know the downside of that rigourous and, I would argue, ultimately unsustainable, schedule.

One may also develop, over time, the unenviable ability to percieve, at least in short glimpses, the only way bearable, how one appears to others whilst in flagrante delicto.

It may be a truism that no one wants to see an average fifty year old male "bust a groove" (by my use of that no doubt outdated terminology I have gone some way to demonstrating how hopelessly "past it" I have become). Indeed, things a twenty year old may do with impunity and perhaps even "look good doing", may bring to mind a rather horrendous three-car pileup when committed by someone approaching or in the grips of "middle age".

continued in the next column, over there, on the right, your right, up, that's it

* On old age

** No one ever became depraved suddenly.

The lust of the goat is the bounty of God. - William Blake

Nowhere is this perhaps more in evidence than when it comes to the question of sexual attraction. A healthy libidinal interest in members of the opposite or same sex, as is your wont, is, or can be, a fine thing. But once one passes a certain point in life (I'm sorry I can't tell you when that is), one must exercise caution. It is very easy to slip over the edge into the land of the creepy.

An appreciative look at an appealing young person can make you seem (and pretty quickly too) like an unshaven old man in a raincoat furtively rummaging in his pockets or, if you are a woman - think of heavily mascaraed woman in a dingy negligee leaning drunkenly in a doorway. Yikes! Before you can say "bear mace" you've made a giant fool of yourself and perhaps frightened some poor young person.

And it's no use bringing up Hugh Hefner or Demi Moore. They could buy and sell you a hundred times over and that makes a difference. Money, a very great deal of money, can make acting on your baser or more juvenile instincts semi-acceptable. Things that you or I could never pull off at our age, fabulously wealthy famous people can do, seemingly without batting an eyelash. But let's admit it - most of us still find Hugh Hefner unbelievably creepy. I mean what chills the mood in a threeway faster than the intermingling smells of liniment and hard candies?

Mostly though rich older celebrities do have a kind of benefit of clergy. For instance, do you know anyone the same age as "The Edge" who wears a toque year round, indoors and out? To properly fit into his demographic, were he possessed of modest means and a more realistic name like, say, David Evans, he would wear a Tilley hat in the summer and something with flaps in the winter. He would also sit to play his guitar.

What is my point? I was afraid you might ask. Is it that one should "act one's age"? No. My point is that you should become really very rich and famous and then you can do whatever you damn well please. I would suggest that you begin by starting your own website.

Hugh Briss