Fallen from our high estate and with death in our hearts, we are all melancholy angels- discuss.
My mother has Andre Maurois' Guide to Living on her shelves. I read a little of it last night. He quotes Conrad as saying we pass a "shadowline" at 40- after which old age begins. Maurois opines that by the time he was writing (in 1939-40) the bar had been raised to 50. I wonder if we've raised it any higher since? Personally, I think not. 50 was the difficult birthday for me. I hardly turned a hair at my 60th.
Then I flipped through a few more pages and lit upon the sentence in which Maurois calls Hitler "a prophet". Ooh er.
Talking about right wing bastards, I've been watching (because my mother likes him) David Starkey talking about Royalty and Music. It's one of the few good things one can say about the Hanoverians that they patronized (and genuinely appreciated) Handel. George IV and Rossini- two vulgar little fat men- were best buddies and used to sing duets together. The last royals to care a fig about music were Victoria and Albert (Albert was as good a composer as Henry VIII- which is to say not at all bad.) Edward VII liked No No Nanette and George V thought Fidelio was "d*mned dull". A discreet veil was drawn over the tastes of the two most recent occupants of the throne. My trust in Starkey as a guide took a beating when he described Elgar as a "northerner". Worcester a northern city? Really? Does the BBC not have fact checkers? Or is Starkey too grand to submit his scripts for vetting before they're shot?
Some rolling-in-it BBC executive deserves to have his or her inflated bonus pricked for this.
(I'm sorry Starkey didn't end his grand historical survey with Elton John rocking the Abbey. Or Brian May thrashing his guitar on the Palace roof. That was a missed trick I think.)
Nights are closing in. When I went out to feed the rabbits at nine it was almost dark. I'll miss this sunny summer when it's gone.
I was turning the lights off last thing and a bulb exploded. Phut.