Thursday, February 10, 2005

The Bonfire of the Vanities

I finally had my long overdue lunch with F. After having spent years communicating (or not communicating) we finally meet at a Karachi restaurant named after an Italian city destroyed by lava ash. I have, however, to put my havana away as they draw the line at smoking there. Somehow, the irony of this is lost on the waiters.

The conversation drifts (even if the smoke doesn't) to our mutual "designer" friends. I confess that even though I love them dearly I am worried about the surfeit of ego they possess. They have, effectively, redone Coppernicus and put themselves at the centre of a new universe. The words "I/me/myself" are spoken repeatedly. The cult of the self has triumphed- and triumphed supremely. F agrees and adds that ego-glut is accompanied by the absence of development -either emotional or intellectual or spiritual. Stuff that looked "cute" when we were teenagers, "tolerable" when we were thirtysomethings is now bordering on the absurd. One does not become older grows older. And growth is implies that one has learned things along the way. In the case of many of our friends this has, quite simply not happened. They have contented themselves with the rat race. Money. Spouses. 2.75 Children. A Civic in the garage. They have not read a book in ages. They are unable to voice an opinion on anything which has not featured in last month's Vogue (ok, Vanity Fair if we're lucky). But are we being unfair ? Is it just some of our friends who are party to this ? Or has society as a whole dumbed itself out of existence. Maybe the truth lurks somewhere in between.

Ps: The food at Pompeii is great. I shattered my no carbs diet with risotto.


Post a Comment

<< Home