I’ll do this like This American Life, in three acts.
Change – plus ça change?
In French they say that the more it changes, the more it stays the same. Like most clichés, it is both true and false. I am the same person I was when I was twelve, essentially – silly, game for most things, obsessed with books and loveliness. These days I find that I am also different. The best way I can think to express it is that my hands are hard to relax. It becomes harder to let go – harder to be generous, open, honest, emotionally free. Circumstances teach secrecy and parsimony, and I resentfully learn.
Change – unlearning
Changing is like getting chicken pox – a real bitch once you’re grown up. And yet here you are with your nose to the wall, and clearly you didn’t get where you wanted to be, and suddenly change doesn’t mean moving again (oh the lovely drug of geography), it means sitting down and talking to yourself sternly. Like science, it’s often counter-intuitive, and you think of Elvis Costello again
“The truth can’t hurt you
It’s just like the dark
It scares you witless
But in time you see things clear and stark.”
Change – bumper stickers
I saw one the other day that said “CHANGE – all you’ll have left when Obama’s done.”
Which was funnier than conservatives usually are. I won’t blame Barry, because these days his sonorous audiobooked voice helps me sleep, but I sympathise with the sentiment – too much change will bankrupt the hell out of the best of us.