I don’t know about you but I look at cows, chomping away in their meadows, and think, nice life. (For now, obviously. Luckily cows are not given to theorising about the future, as far as we know.)
Simple things make me happy. The dog. She’s so cute to look at, with her snout on my thigh and her hopeful eyes on my dinner. The sun on my back as I drink coffee outside. The taste of a croissant with jam and butter. Flowers. If I had a bunch of chickens and donkeys and cows and cats, I’d be in clover.
But I live in a state of perpetual uneasiness about my higher drives and functions. If I haven’t written, I feel bad. If I haven’t created something – a painting, a song – I feel like I’m wasting time. Life is an isolation cell, and if you don’t keep marking the walls, like the Count of Monte Cristo, you’ll descend into madness. Or bovine contentment, which would be almost as bad. I’m acutely conscious of the passing of time, my time. I figure I have, at most, twenty years left. Each year goes past with increasing speed (so many people have noticed besides me) so I’d better not procrastinate…
And yet, why not? Why not just spend ALL DAY lying about in the sun (or, if it’s cold, under a blanket somewhere cosy). Eating croissants?