|So many choices....|
Especially the "Arts and Leisure" section which, in my bottomless immaturity, I began to call "Farts and Leisure."
I used to come away reeling with self-recrimination due to the innumerable indie flicks I would never travel to some roach-infested Greenwich Village basement to see or the fact that their travel section insisted that I will not have "lived" until I tango in Argentina or waltz in Vienna.
This is all well and good for many...and I wish you all happy travels. But for me, whose history and budget are more geared for a hot dog at Nathan's, it stirred up great internal discomfort.
The book reviews did me in as well. I didn't care that Kafka and Camu chose boxers to briefs (or that Freud preferred to go commando especially when his mommy was home) but I always felt like a dunce because I wasn't interested.
Reading the cultural sections of the New York Times always left me with a vague ache for that which I would never do, travel, eat, watch or read.
When I stopped buying the paper, starting as a grand-gesture with the oppressively immense Sunday edition, I felt free.
I moved on to the Wall Street Journal which had always seemed dignified and a bit more terse than the New York Times and, for a while, felt more comfortable. It seemed more objective, more stable and didn't make me feel quite as left out of the upscale world of leisure and entertainment.
That's changing, however. The Journal has been steadily infusing itself with increasingly out-of-reach suggestions and its tone is starting to make me feel somewhat as I did when I was younger and more easily intimidated.
The good part is that, as I have grown older, I have become more immune to this sort of self-inflicted pressure.
I realize what my limitations are and, most importantly, who I am: a kind of provincial ninny/reverse-snob who may actually see parts of the world yet untraveled but it will, most likely, be with a tour group of Americans wearing ill-fitting shorts instead of through the eyes of a willowy fashionista touring vintage shops in secluded corners of Paris.
|Now this is a great idea.|
This weekend's Journal had a large article devoted entirely to the size of linen dinner napkins which, according to the distressed author of the piece, has been steadily shrinking over the years. I have not noticed this.
I realize that not everything is hard news and, for some, this was a fluff piece that successfully provided distraction from the horror of current events. I totally respect the contingent out there which does notice this sort of thing. But it's not me.
So, I may have to switch publicly to a closet-favorite of mine: The National Enquirer. There I can keep up with what and who is really important with the certainty, of course, that every word is 100% true.