The life I’ve been granted should ideally accomplish what was intended. My last post expounded on a basic philosophy exemplified by Clarence “Pine Top” Smith’s quote: “Use what you got, 'cause that’s all you get.”
When I was a teenager, well before I had sex, I used to carry the ubiquitous condom to dry up in my wallet just to— be prepared— as the Boy Scouts say. It wasn’t until I actually began having sex that I realized the rubbers no longer lasted. I’d buy a 3-pack and they’d be gone that night. Wheeee!
Same with packing a suitcase. I tend to travel with lots of stuff because I wouldn’t want to miss out on any unexpected pleasure. So typical baggage would include a bathing suit, tent, fishing rods & tackle box, fishing hat, nice hat, camera, dress clothes, funky clothes, weed, magnifying glass, loupe and whatever else the destination might possibly call for.
I believe I was bestowed with an enhanced capacity for pleasure. My suitcase runneth over, so to speak. There are so many people who don’t seem to have that capacity, always looking for the down side. Consequently, they tend to lead sad lives.
It’s understood that our individual histories have a lot to do with difference in perspective, but my life hasn’t been a bowl of cherries either. In OGG posts over the years, I’ve mentioned the scars of illness that both Momma X and I have had to endure. She was sick for over a decade early on in her life, and some things never truly resolve, though they do become bearable. My problems came later in the form of cancer and subsequent liver transplant, followed by a triple bypass several years later. Just mentioning these things so the rest of this doesn’t sound overly lucky or privileged. I have the responsibility to use what I got these past 13 years because a young person died while I, the recipient of his liver, have the opportunity to go on living.
My approach to good food and drink is legendary among our friends. Once I’ve tasted a dish, I can identify the ingredients and how they were prepared. I’ve managed to not become terribly overweight, but do have to keep that aspect in mind. In one way or another we can use up those pleasure chips.
I used to be lots more fun. Sometimes too much fun. I liked booze. I liked the effect. I had a better time when I had a drink. Maybe I had an even better time than that—on two drinks. Not so with ten drinks. Or fourteen. A hard lesson to learn. That damn law of diminishing returns shows its ugly side with drugs too. Hence the liver transplant. No more drinking now. I’ve used up all my booze/hard drug chips.
Perhaps I’m afflicted by a version of Stendhal’s syndrome. I am physically affected by artistic form, depth and color. No, I’m not talking about erections per se, but it’s all part of the package. Or maybe part of the baggage?
At the supermarket, gym (Stairmaster) or on the street, there’ll be beautiful women to observe. At this age, I can find positive physical attributes in most women, so my observations aren’t necessarily any sort of quantification, but a too-late realization that there are admirable qualities in most women. This goes for inanimate objects too. I’m constantly breaking down landscapes, trees, clouds and buildings to their linear essentials, creating abstract visuals in my mind. Not the kind of guy likely to get bored.
I seem to enjoy trips to museums a whole lot more than most, though I do tire faster because after a while, the emotions evoked by art have a draining affect. Then my back starts to ache.
But the syndrome has served me well in the art and antiques trade. They say I have a “good eye.” It’s actually a passion. A passion I’m eternally grateful for. I see form in objects others don’t. I consciously recognize effects of art that function subliminally for most people.
I’ve always loved sex, another thing we’re meant to enjoy. I think I’ve enjoyed it more than most, at least still thinking about it at 73 frikkin’ years old. I know people who gave up the practice in their 30’s and 40’s, apparently happy about the outcome. What a waste.
Perhaps writing erotica has served to enhance and prolong that enjoyment for me, even though completing actual sex with another person is no longer an option.
In other words, I was born with a suitcase stuffed with a huge capacity for pleasure. Too many women, too much booze, too many beautiful things to see.
Wouldn’t have it any other way.