Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Father Christmas

For someone like my father (a man who traditionally has the appearance of being socially distressed except when things are strictly on his own terms), Christmas (or indeed any other merrymaking) is at first blush an inconvenience. This at least is the situation if he harbours (or my mother seeks to enforce) the remotest idea that his participation in the event is either required or expected. It’s the presumption of charity that kills him. To succumb to the social convention which attends such ceremony is for him a grave irritation, though I suspect it would be closer to the truth to label it an awkwardness or disenchantment. Whatever the limitation, there is no question that the nuisance value is high.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Men and boys and the price of their toys!

It would be unimaginable to address the battalion of options available for discourse upon the facetious subject of "men and boys and the price of their toys". Beginning with childhood and continuing to adulthood, there is among males the well-known passage from dinky toys to train sets, from bicycles to all-terrain vehicles, from motorcycles to automobiles, from boats to planes and many other combinations of mechanical diversions in between. What however is a less publicized absorption is the delight which men derive from watches and clocks.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The Value of Money

To countenance the expenditure of money naturally calls for some justification especially when the recommendation is conjoined with extravagance. Even the profligate spender harbours the shadow of concern for primary economic theory (though of course he seldom dilutes the strength of his initial devotion). By contrast the close-fisted penny-pincher buoys his preferred fiscal modesty with psychology, likening materialism to Philistinism. Between these two extremes of pecuniary dissolution and worldly deprivation resides the body of people who from time to time have what I believe to be a quite understandable need or desire to reward themselves. Nonetheless with all this talk of late about the incredible amount of debt being serviced by Canadians the idea of spending even funny money may be considered foolhardy. I think however that this is a proposition which needs to be re-examined in a context broader than mere economic principles or the loaded comparison of intemperance and frugality. It is my thesis that spending some money on yourself can be a very good thing indeed.