Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Morning Becomes No One

Make Hay while the sun shines? Why? It’s so much hotter then. And who the hell buys hay?

During the day, people are up to no good. In Los Angeles, I spend my days with the shades drawn and the curtains pulled tight. I loathe the sun. It pierces my skin. I often joke that I have a touch of the Lupus. I just can’t stand it on me. Never could. Wears me out. Not to mention, I do not like to acknowledge the daylight hours. I thought I might do a little better in France.


I am not a morning person. And on a recent trip to Paris it became clear to me that I’m not much of an afternoon person either. The problem with the daylight hours is everyone is so busy working that I find it detracts from my main belief of physical infrastructure: Everything that exists for my consumption (and yours) and my pleasure (and yours) magically appears by machines and spontaneous generation. Human beings pass their time solely in the pursuit of pleasure and fulfillment. Of course I am very aware that my thinking is delusional, but isn’t it a better delusion than the huge clothing corporations who trick themselves into believing it is fine for small children to ply the needle? In fact, as I will state again and again, I do believe all work could be given to machines while the living enjoy the day. Since this has not yet come to pass, I refuse to pay attention to the day, much like a mother will ignore her screaming brat in hopes that the behavior will disappear. In my quest to change the world I have taken what may seem passive to others, but to me it feels like the most obvious choice of bravery. While others rally as the sun hits their windows (or cardboard home) I stay in bed as long as possible. This is my personal revolution and I entice you to join me for there is power in numbers and believe me, sleeping late is better than getting up.

And what about all that noise? Why are garbage trucks so clamorous? Like passive aggressive carpenters, do they assault our ear drums by purposefully avoiding being considerate? Do these garbage trucks rattle and bang in order to arouse me from my hotel bed? They are six floors below my window, yet it is as if they are collecting refuse in my bathroom. And what a small bathroom it is! These French don’t waste space on their ablutions. This, of course, should have been clear to me as I have noticed upon close inspection their hair, which barely hangs as it greasily sticks to their frozen heads mere centimeters above their frayed Hermes scarves and their duck liver stained Channel suits. Are the small bathrooms, these torture chambers like wet pens for veal, the reason they don’t last through the full act of personal hygiene? Are they just too cramped? I don’t believe so. I am a middle sized human and I get along just fine. I am about the size of most Frenchmen and certainly larger than most Frenchwomen. There is no lack of water in the country. And from the store windows I have noticed they make as many kinds of soap as they do cheese. In the end, one can only wonder, why are the French so dirty? But more importantly, why are they so unfunny? And this brings us back to the point at hand which is the morning and its abusive act of rattling us out of our beds.

This rattling certainly must make for a cranky society. This holds for all societies, but maybe has a lesser affect on Americans as we have always been a culture of farmers and religious zealots, both of whom must get up early to catch the worm. But we’re talking about Paris and there are no farmers here and certainly no one believes in God. And one would think that a post-religious society would at least have a street sense of irony, but this has remained undiscovered in my view. I have never met a more serious bunch and let’s face it, they have every reason on earth to be joking. They have been on the fade since the First World War. Their beautiful language does not hold the same sway in the world as English. Their music is bad. And they’ve been eating the same food for centuries. In truth, their empire is gone. The only thing that remains are the palaces and these have all been turned into museums or government offices. And they are filled with very busy, very serious workers who get up in the morning and go to their travail with neither smiles nor song. Here, in a country that is so teeming with beauty, the sunlight pelting the fountains and monuments, and everyone is so glum. Even in spring. It hurts the non-Latin heart to see such grimness in such a bountiful, beautiful land. They do stay up late for dinner and for this I am very grateful as I despise eating my main meal of the day until after the movie. And there I am in a restaurant loaded with Parisians snarfing on oysters and paté and bread and choucroute and saucisson piled to the golden rafters. I cannot imagine they are in bed sooner than One A.M. However, unlike me, they have to go to the office to make French decisions, go to the boulangerie to make French pastries, go to the pharmacie to fill French prescriptions (most of them anti-depressants, I am so sure) and all this could be so completely avoided if they just stayed in bed and let the machines do it.

Now, I am not one to propose taking away a job that someone likes to do. One person’s torture is another person’s boucherie. So, if they want to be bureaucrats, bakers and candlestick makers, be my guest, but after staying up late at night digesting all that animal fat, wouldn’t it make more sense to stay in bed until at least, I don’t know, noon? The mornings would be quiet and I bet the French would feel much more rested and perhaps have time to laugh a little? It takes a well rested person to be in a good mood. So my suggestion to our friends in Gaul is to pull those covers over your heads and fart a little and please, by all means, do not collect the garbage before my maid empties my trash and believe me, she isn’t coming into my room before thirteen o’clock. If the French begin the revolution, which really is their main role in Europe, certainly the rest of the E.U. will follow and we Americans who are opposed to sunlight can all move there and let the farming and the religion continue in full daylight as is necessary. If you have any opinions on this subject, I advise you to call me, though please don’t try to reach me before three-o-clock.

1 comment:

RebeccaW said...

I'm a day-person but I've always suspected that the night people were the really cool ones and that I was missing all the good stuff. And it is too noisy.