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  • Dr. Mezmer

Time Enough at Last!

If you wait long enough, things just blow over, or just get blown up, and you can settle back to a life of leisure where you can do all the things you wanted to do. The irony of retirement is that even when things get blown up, leaving you all alone with your books and endless cans of beans, you need to have something stashed away, like an extra pair of eyeglasses.

In a classic episode of the original Twilight Zone series, that was the problem with a Henry Bemis, a mild-mannered bank clerk with a penchant for reading books, anywhere, and all the time. His shrewish wife hounded him, tore up his book of poetry, and not appreciated by a culture that scorned the written word, retired to a bank vault to read in solitude.

Then the H Bomb hit.

Disoriented at first, but upon finding conveniently irradiated food and the wreck of the public library with its books intact, solitude became a godsend. He arranges the books into literary gallery, and bending over to read the first book, trips and smashes his glasses, his hopes consigned to oblivion and him to despair.

For myself, in my retirement years, I will lay out all of the thousand books in my personal library to read at my leisure, keep to my own solitude with Shakespeare and Dickens as company, and scribble my own books to satisfy my own personal muse. I will keep two pairs of reading glasses of course.

And soon enough, I’m dead, and all is oblivion.

Goes to show, there’s never time enough.

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