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The Devil you know, too

Published: 
Friday, January 17, 2014

Most days, with the exception of only birth- and paydays, I’m fairly content being myself (and even the birthdays compensate for being a whole year closer to my future absence with presents). Every now and then, though, somebody does something I notice, and I wonder if I’d be happier (or at least less miserable) being him or her. (I’m happy to be female, once I don’t have to fake an attraction to males, and once I don’t have to be a Muslim woman, apart from Malala Yousafzai). Here is the list I considered this week:

 

Kamla Persad-Bissessar
Advantages:
• Can avoid every professional and personal obligation, from resigning over Section 34 to protecting own sister from being viewed as a locho jetsetter, and still wag her finger at everyone else for not living up to theirs
• Assured of a damned fine salary until death, no matter how bad or good a job she’s done as PM
• Has lost her party three elections in a row, but hasn’t faced a UNC leadership election
• Almost certain to have a comfortable retirement very soon
Disadvantages:
• Has to face the imminent Jack-Lash
• Can at this stage do nothing right in the eyes of the neemakaram electorate/Cabinet/party financiers
• Bound to feel crushed when fair-weather friends desert her the moment she loses influence (but this does segue into the advantage of finding out who your real friends are)

 

 

Lou Reed
Advantages:
• Changed the pop music of his time
• Made talk-singing a style for rock ‘n’ roll, like Johnny Cash for C&W
• Wrote Walk on the Wild Side, most audacious Top Ten song ever, and Sweet Jane, perhaps best guitar riff
• Wasn’t the ugliest Velvet Undergrounder, as long as manager Andy Warhol lived
• Lived to 71, far longer than his excessive youth should have permitted
Disadvantages:
• Died at 71, far younger than his middle-aged moderation might have allowed
• Not being the ugliest Velvet Undergrounder didn’t make him pretty
• Settled down with a transvestite, instantly turning Walk on the Wild Side into Stroll into Boring Marriage

 

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