Today, Best Beloved, I bring you a Maundering, hands cupped about its frail warmth as I whisper, “look!”–and on what shall we maunder? Why, the meaning of life! Namely, how to determine whether yours has any (a how-to guide).
Even as Prufrock laments “I have measured out my life in coffee spoons,” another group rejoices at the thought of measuring a year, or a lifetime, in cups of coffee. Whence comes this discrepancy? I believe that there is a fundamental difference in philosophy here; where one sees only the lack of great acts performed and women seduced, another may choose to focus on the mundane beauty of all things. I count myself in the second camp, being continually awed by everything around me. Leaves! the fractal randomness of plaster! intricate designs both man-made and otherwise! You have probably noticed them too, having been told by society to go outside to get to school or work or wherever you’re going. I should be very sad to be a shut-in, as there are so many more excellent things outside my house than in it.
This begs the question: how do I measure my life? I see the year as a great wheel, from whose damp autumn side faraway spring can be seen. With this, it seems that I measure life in the most mundane of all ways, by time. Of course, there are landmarks, mostly days spent with my favorite compatriots, full of hilarity and joy, but I also mark my time by illnesses, stress level, weather, performances, &c. So in fact, I measure life by life; it is not after all a thing that can be poured into a graduated cylinder any more than there is a finite amount of it, it being as changeable and fleeting, yet constant, as the stuff of which it is made: electricity.
Yes, Best Beloved, your soul is lightning! being the one thing that, I am convinced, abandons the body at death. I could say that this explains much about human nature, so fickle as it is, but it does not. I only mention it because it is one more mundane thing that excites me terribly, and I hope it does the same for you.