‘Life is, in fact, a battle. Evil is insolent and strong; beauty enchanting but rare; goodness very apt to be weak; folly very apt to be defiant; wickedness to carry the day; imbeciles to be in great places, people of sense in small, and mankind generally unhappy. But the world as it stands is no illusion, no phantasm, no evil dream of a night; we wake up to it again for ever and ever; we can neither forget it nor deny it nor dispense with it.’
Though few of us would express them so well as Henry James, it is likely that, in our darker moments, we are all prone to such thoughts. Sometimes life just doesn’t seem worth the candle. One looks at the headlines; one looks to the future (such as it is); one is inclined to mourn the injustices and ill fortune, the tragedy and evil inherent in creation.
But it may be that things aren’t as bad as they seem. Cast your mind back a year to the time you discovered that you’d been rolling up your sleeves wrong your entire life:
Well, it may be that the reason your shoelaces are coming undone all the time is because the knot you’re tying isn’t quite the knot you think it is.
Examine, if you will, your shoes. If, like renowned brain Terry Moore did, you see that the loops are pointing more up-and-down than side-to-side, therein lies the source of much of your anguish:
So be of good cheer, pop the kettle on, and slide a crumpet or two into the toaster; we’re here for a good time, not a long time – and we can now be reasonably confident that when the time comes they will indeed ‘tell Ma we dies with our boots on’.