Patina: The Necessity of Failure and Aging

All things fade and falter; such is the nature of our world. Anyone who believes otherwise will be endlessly disappointed as he or she attempts to keep their possessions [and for some, their bodies] in pristine condition: mint. I have come to terms with this reality, and make a point of using every object as much as possible so that I may enjoy it, push it, bend it, and, yes, break it. Sadly, today a few too many things fell apart, and I find myself looking for the King’s men to put them back together again.

While at dinner in the Canyon Creek lounge area, my lapis lazuli necklace from The Oberoi Hotel in Cairo exploded onto the floor unexpectedly; priceless little balls of the stone went flotsam jetsam everywhere. All I could do it ask for a flashlight from the bartender and seek as many of the pieces as possible. I found all but two, and will need to find a bead store with a thin wire to reconstruct what I considered the most beautiful thing I owned. No tears were shed; I accept that these things happen, that it could have happened while on the highway, and that I did well to only lose two small balls. All I can do is rebuild in a way that will not reflect the Egyptian use of string instead of wire – if you have been to Cairo, then you will understand why they would not be using finer materials.

Next up, was a RAM stick in my Mac Pro: dead. Cannot do much other than yank it after I finish writing and order another matched pair. Thirdly, would be the carbon finer tank rail on my bike: scratched with with the zipper of my jacket. All I can do is finely sand out the scratch and apply a thin coat of clear coat. Finally, I had my teeth cleaned at the dentist. That actually went well enough, but teeth are one of those parts of the human body that was not meant to remain perfectly white, straight or chip-free for an entire lifetime. Ignore the lies that your dentist tells you about not ever being able to floss or brush enough, as teeth will fail over your lifetime and all of the flossing or veneers will not improve the foundation.

The point is that there is also an inherent beauty in what is natural decay. Women try to stop aging through countless creams and cosmetic surgeries which only make their bodies grotesque over the process. Show me one woman over fifty with great plastic surgery and we will find her a monster in ten years. What women misunderstand is that natural cracks, lines and wearing down of the body is more beautiful than a cake n’ bake layer painted an inch thick. What the family who Saran Wraps their remote control to keep it from wearing loses is the pleasure of its design and purpose. People who use their China plates only on special occasions miss out on is the beauty of dining in style. The patina of aging is what creates nostalgic beauty; the patina demonstrates that a human being loved an object enough to wear it in and share atoms with that object.

On other notes: I completed my oil change on the Ducati, but despite finding a hex socket close to 14mm, I was unable to pull out the screen. I will meet up with a friend about his book project tomorrow, which should prove interesting. Paderno is also sending along a shipment of hero shots for me to work on when I return from Barcelona, which should help to pay for all of this breakage and decay.


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