While I whittle my time away in idle thought and contemplation, empires are gained and others lost. When has this perspective on the world ever made anyone get up from their chair? It is too large a perspective. But what about this: “It’s sunny out. Let’s have a walk!” That will inevitably work. And it is only those interested in the gaining and losing of empires that mind. I knew a norseman who was one of them. He’d inherited a small kingdom and lost it together with the use of his manhood. When I found out about it, we talked through the night and he tried to impress me with tales instead, which did work, though it didn’t distract me from the issue of nonperformance at hand. His manliness stood in a stark contrast to his malfunction. Worst of all, he’d vowed to remain this way until he’d regained his kingdom. I never met a man so bent on self destruction.
#81/100 days 2011. Illustration: Olaus Magnus, History of the Nordic Peoples (from 1555), “On the election of kings.”