Friday, August 15, 2008

Sed fugit interea fugit irreparabile tempus

Even with the help of Wikipedia this all the cleverness I can manage for the morning...

So I'm back in New York and in Boston. How can one return to two places? Many people ask me this, and a few understand, but nonetheless it is difficult to explain. It's not like you mirror your life, with two of everything. Because each side of the mirror is different. For a long while the Boston side had a work life and spartan living, and New York had my apartment and life. I've recently moved the flat to Boston, so what's left here in New York? A camp-like sublet, while I'm waiting on a more stable place in New York. And of course life!

New York in summer is a bit like a hyperactive child on Ritalin -- it is quieter than usual, though only a loving parent would notice. But it's true. You can actually get into a restaurant of your choice on 5 minutes' notice, and at a decent time (8,9,10 are prime time depending on your age and nationality) rather than phoning 10 days ahead to be told gleefully that "we can offer you 5.30 or 11.30". It's true none of the usual celebrities are hanging out, and the famous chefs are probably away too. But that's fine with me -- I don't care for the former and I'm sure the latter are pretty handy with a whisk as well.

Of course, some things you do have two of -- toothbrush, for example. But for everything else you end up either wishing you had the things from one city in the other, or worse forgetting where everything is, or even worse losing things in the back and forth.

But what I feel most strongly is indeed that time flees. The promised summer came and went (note the past tense, sadly). And yes, work was done, meals cooked and enjoyed, friends well met, concerts attended, all washed down with whine.

Perhaps a little more grit, earth, sand, friction, texture would slow things down, and if they went slower then I could savor every moment a little more (extensively, if not intensively, because if nothing else, life is intense).

Perhaps a little more idling would allow dust to gather, seeds to sprout, and the joys of life to settle around me, like a flock of birds coming to rest, rather than me like a hound in pursuit.

Tempus fugit. (And indeed why not that other over-used but profound phrase?) Carpe diem.*


P.S. I usually blog about my musical follies, but here's my soundtrack for the morning and a solid start if you're feeling autumnal in late summer.

** Horace, Odes, 1.11
Tu ne quaesieris, scire nefas, quem mihi, quem tibi Leuconoe, don't ask — it's a sin to know —
finem di dederint, Leuconoe, nec Babylonios what end the gods will give me or you. Don't play with Babylonian
temptaris numeros. ut melius, quidquid erit, pati. fortune-telling either. It is better to endure whatever will be.
seu pluris hiemes seu tribuit Iuppiter ultimam, Whether Jupiter has allotted to you many more winters or this final one
quae nunc oppositis debilitat pumicibus mare which even now wears out the Tyrrhenian sea on the rocks placed opposite
Tyrrhenum: sapias, vina liques et spatio brevi — be smart, drink your wine. Scale back your long hopes
spem longam reseces. dum loquimur, fugerit invida to a short period. While we speak, envious time will have {already} fled
aetas: carpe diem quam minimum credula postero. Seize the day, trusting as little as possible in the future.

(Thank you Wikiedia for this bit of cleverness. Absurdly I "read" the Odes when I was 17. Sometimes it might be better to leave some pleasures to later in life when one can appreciate them.)


mes petits secrets said...

Hello BB! I am stalking you to find out where this magical piano/cocktail bar is in nyc (you mentioned on a comment on lola is beauty) ive been searching for such a place forever! please do tell!

Bombay Beauty said...

One can't give away all one's secrets over the web... I'll e-mail you one this... BB

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