As I settle into my indefinite retreat from society the minutiae of life and language begin to appear magnified. “I’m sorry, I just haven’t got time to do that” will become a meaningless phrase or, more succinctly, a porky pie because, as many times as we wash our hands, we will still have a surfeit of time left on them during which we must find things to do: pastime metamorphoses into challenge, into obstacle and there’s the problem. We’re doing time.
The cell wall graffiti calendar needs redefining and now, if ever there was a time, is the moment to do it. Carving galleons from bone was a favourite pastime for Napoleonic prisoners of war which art form may well regain its popularity but it will prove difficult for vegetarians: although, with empty shelf syndrome, endemame beans, calcots, kimchi and golden tofu may be liable to substitution. There is an esoteric pleasure in shopping on line ( I speak of France, where we are) in which everything seems to be available. Jenny and I tick this and that and that and this and feel a bit guilty …”Have we bought too much..? ,,,let’s cut something out…too late ….oh, fuck”: and I go to pick up what I’m sure will be a ziggurat of monumental proportions mounted on a metal shopping trolley surrounded by floor markings keeping the gawping crowd at bay. As it turns out the “oh, fuck” of greed was unnecessary and was substituted for an alternative “oh, fuck” as the trolley, with my name on it, contained one disposable brown paper carrier bag with a small and random selection of the order placed and poetic justice had been done. .
Just remember….Sic Transit Gloria…..keep a good 2 metres away from her.