Monday, 25 April 2016

Cold Wind and the Chastity Blues

Recently for reasons that don’t matter, I came up with a definition of depressed: imagine that someone gave you £10,000, and you couldn’t think of anything you could buy that would improve the quality of your life. Here are some answers a regular person might think of:

A luxury two-week holiday
Replacing your old second-hand car with a later model second-hand car
A few trips to, uh, masseurs whose, um, publicity material you’ve seen online
A blow-out catered supper for all your friends and acquaintances
A bunch of city breaks throughout the year
Re-stocking your wardrobe
Upgrading your hi-fi and media kit
A really good leather sofa and armchair
Replace all the mattresses in your house
Get the bathroom or kitchen refreshed
Pay down your debts

You know. Lots of things. All of which are reasonably attainable and don’t involve fantasies involving Mica Arganarez.

Any excuse for a picture of Mica.

Some of them I’ve done already. The point is, I realised that if I did some of these, it wouldn’t make me feel any better about my life or myself. And I can’t tell you how much I still look at my three-year-old kitchen and pat myself on the back for it. I appreciate material stuff. I am after all a Taurus.

But right now? Nada. And not because I am super-spiritual right now.

Some of it is the Chastity Blues (celibacy is not being married, chastity is not getting laid) . Extended chastity is not like long-term sobriety: it’s easy not to take the first drink. Staying chaste requires the same lack of effort (don’t buy booze, don’t approach women) to maintain, but I’ve found that long-term chastity puts my soul under a constant tension that every now and then breaks one of the its fibres.That’s when I feel the hurt, and think that some intimate contact would be a tremendous relief and wash me through with Good Hormones. But of course, when I’m feeling the hurt, I wouldn’t go near an opportunity, because it would mean too much, and be too painful if it failed.

No-one with plastic and metal wires in their mouths can feel relaxed and at ease. I’ve cut back on the range of food I eat and while I still taste it, the act of eating is not itself a pleasure. That’s a lot to miss. It’s been un-naturally cold in the UK this year and I just haven’t wanted to leave the front door if I can avoid it. And us ascetic types get tired of the friction of just seeing and hearing the rest of the human race.

It’s called “functioning depression”. I get up and go to work. I eat and exercise. I don’t mope. I keep myself, my clothes and my quarters clean. I pay my bills and generally take care of my affairs. But I don’t do anything that results in me feeling relaxed, happy, satisfied, and generally at one and ease with the world. However temporarily. Because I can’t think of anything that might that wouldn’t basically be drugs (sex, booze, holidays, chocolate).

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