Being a gentleman of indeterminate years, I can sometimes forget that I’m no longer a gay young blade about town, with long flowing locks and a winsome smile, finagling men of a certain sort into my bed. I can be reminded of that when I pass by a shop window and notice the rather portly gent shadowing me. The bellybutton appears just a little bit too long, before the nose does, followed by a shock of white and a dazzle of bald. I like you, I think to myself, while also vaguely reflecting on gyms and plates with no bread on them. Not even crumbs, the accusing remains of pleasures past.
No, today my bed is a place of refuge where I creakingly drag my bones to rest and replenish. The creaking bedsprings scrape loose all but forgotten memories of distant lust with corresponding thoughts of how nice a nice cup of tea would be. Better not, I’ll be in and out of the jacks like a fiddler’s elbow, all night long.
I noticed recently that my white bed sheets and pillowcases and duvet covers as well as my white towels and my white t-shirts were all looking a bit tired. They looked sort of grey and unwashed. Like they were dirty and the dirt hadn’t washed out properly. Nice to have them nice and nice again, just in case, you know.
I washed them on the 90° cycle but that didn’t seem to make any difference. I then soaked them in bleach overnight and washed them again but that also didn’t seem to do the trick. I then bought some stuff at the supermarket, oxy something or the other, and put in double the amount I was supposed to put in but again, they still looked like they might have belonged to a homeless person. Feck it.
A couple days ago, I had them laid out on the bed, like a corpse at a wake, as I was going to donate them to a charity shop and buy some new ones. I had come back from a shower but, lo and behold, they were spotlessly white; sparklingly dazzlingly white. Miraculously white.
WTF, as the young ‘uns say.
Then I noticed that I I hadn’t got my glasses on at that time They have a blue light filter because I work a lot on the computer and my eyes get sore. When I put the specs on, the white clothes look grey or brown; they don’t look clean. When I take them off, everything white looks very white. Hmmn
By the way, did you know that the whitest objects in the whole universe are an Irish persons legs. Most other pale peoples’ legs are really a very, very, very, very, very faint beige or cream coloured. Only Irish legs are really white.
I wonder what other things I’m seeing through a filter?
What do I see when I look in the mirror? Is the face looking back at me the same as the face looking in? I like to think so. But I look a little bit deeper. I can see the face whiten; as white as my bed sheets; I seem the skin turn waxy and then melt away and my skull, first white, then brown, crumble into dust and become part of this ancient land.
And then I notice my eyes getting a bit strained and starey. And then I blink. And then I forget. And then I forget what I’d forgotten. Soon, I forget that I’d forgotten. The delusion wins again. The veil descends
I’m also wondering what other assumptions I might be making about things? I probably don’t know and probably also don’t know that I don’t know. This could leave me open to the charge of being called an eejit.
Funny old thing, perception.