I am 44 now, 45 in 27 days. That’s as good a time as any to ponder about mortality, right?
Fact is, that I read about 20 books a year. Let’s be generous, let’s make this a whopping 33.3 or 100 in three years. This is a pretty optimistic average, but let’s pretend that when I retire, I will begin to read like mad.
Fine. That makes 1000 books in 30 years, 1500 books in 45 years. Now, you may remember that I mentioned some 3000+ books that we had to move to Villach and to shelve alphabetically. Begin to see the problem?
Of course there’s about more than half of the books that I won’t bother reading anyway. Many were not bought by me, many even are heirlooms. Hey, we even have an original copy of Adolf Hitler’s “Mein Kampf”, and I have read that. Interesting thought that someone could have read this book and later pretend, he had not known what Hitler would do. But that’s another story.
And that’s not even all. There are some hundreds of books more in Vienna, and each year I buy about two thirds of the books that I read, thus the collection constantly grows. At the moment there is quite some shelf space left, but I guess this won’t last for more than three years.
It’s not only books either. Have you learned all the languages that you wanted to learn? Seen all the movies you wanted to see? Visited all the places that you want to visit? Heard all the music you wanted to hear? Been in all the museums and collections where your favorite painter’s images hang?
And are these not the very questions that make us ponder much too much about facts that are set, facts that we have no chance to influence, at least not in a decisive way? Is the answer to not care about it? But if we don’t care, are we even able to value? And if we don’t value what we have and do, who should?
For some people religion is the answer, and that’s indeed tempting, because it allows to pretend that the problem does not even exist. After all, there must be pretty much time to read books in eternity, huh?
And creativity? Art? It’s a way to leave something behind, isn’t it? It’s pretty sure that many more people know Vincent Van Gogh than ever knew him during all his lifetime. Do we create for eternity? And did he?
All of today’s images were shot in my living room in Villach, because weather was about as disgusting as yesterday and I did not want to go out. I used the Sigma 20/1.8, handheld at f1.8.