Tuesday night. Leafing through the New York Review of Books I discover that it has a Personals section. I'd never noticed this before. I do a quick scan. Artists, writers, PhDs - women interested in opera and ballet and movies and piano sonatas and watercolours and buddhism seeking educated, creative, perceptive, thoughtful, witty and 'quasi-normal' men to "explore the heights of the mind, the realms of the globe and the depths of love". Wow! I feel like I've stumbled upon a secret elephant burying ground.
Then I read the thing more closely. "50ish", "44-59", "48-64", "mid-50s to early 70s" "50+". Right. A woolly mammoth burying ground then. The median age of people these ads are targeted at is 55. The youngest person advertising is 38 (but assures that you she looks 29!). It's official - I'm an old person. It's just a matter of time before my body figures this out.
I wonder if the NYRB will let me contract for a Personal ad to come out in Decembe 2035. I'm going to need to put one in then anyway, and just think of the killing I could make by locking in their current rate.
In other non-news, the NYRB also features a glorious poem called the Trumpeter Swan by Robin Robertson:
He takes a run at it: heaving himself
up off the lake, wing-beats echoing,
the wheeze of each pull
pulling him clear.
The sky is empty;
every stretch of water
flaunts its light.
You can learn how to fly, see all the edges
soften and blur, but you can't hold on
to the height you find,
you can never be taught how to fall.