Sunday, December 30, 2007


Maturity is a bitter disappointment for which no remedy exists, unless laughter can be said to remedy anything.
- Kurt Vonnegut

I have been feeling excessively mature, which flattens my emotions and makes them... decorous. There is a blog called At the Half Note, written by a creative, thoughtful and beautiful woman who (my diagnosis) cannot come to terms with her own aging. Result: flailing about, and in public too. Part of me envies her, the same part that sees a toddler meltdown at the airport and empathises.

The trouble is, any woman who sets out to find 'true love' at forty-five has (in my opinion) lost her bearings. Women are sold a romantic fallacy from birth and should be able to see through it by age twenty-five, or we make ourselves sitting ducks for seducers who can play that game expertly. Romance isn't love, end of story.

I have been trying to define the bearings which guide maturity. The first is do no harm, so I start with impossibility. The second is duty, a loaded term as unglamorous as foundations and sewage pipes. The third is autonomy. Don't want to think about it any more, so there. Nyah.

I believe the origin of claustrophobia is awareness trapped inside the body, familiar comfortable body which gradually becomes less comfortable, less familiar. We depend on it, we maintain it, we distract ourselves with it, dress it up, tend it, curb it for its own good. At what point do our interests diverge from the physical?

Toddle off for another cup of coffee.


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