Sunday, January 17, 2010

Light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin, my soul.


For the past three days, Alisdair and I have been hiding out at one of his family's homes, outside the American capital. You will recall that the last time we wrote you, we had just landed back in New York after enjoying several months of much-needed restorative bliss at the Kurhaus in Wiesbaden. Alas, though, all the recuperation we achieved in Germany has been completely spent by our New Year's celebrations of five nights ago (you will recall from our last post that the Julian 1 Ianuarius fell on your 14 January this year). The party we hosted was daring, outrageous, and ultimately tragic. The theme was age reversal, the goal being to put on an age as far as possible from one's true number of winters. We had geriatrics crawling around in diapers and secondary school first years hobbling about with canes and fake hunch backs. We, of course, dressed as ourselves to confuse the hell out of our guests. All was going well until one elderly guest showed up with a large bottle--ironically, a Methuselah--of Perrier Jouet, which he then proceeded to drink with very little assistance. This was entirely normal - our parties are notorious for their depravity and immoderation - except that as a consequence of this chap's overindulgence he broke the Methuselah bottle over the head of a district court judge masquerading as a five-year-old.

Although the judge's thick cranium was resilient enough to withstand the great blow without incurring serious injury, the impact must have knocked a screw loose because the formerly jovial judge proceeded to threaten us with punishments both corporeal and ethereal. As it turned out, the "elderly" reveler who assaulted the magistrate was actually no more than a lad of 14! Instead of standing to face charges of corrupting the youth, we elected to flee the state, as neither Alisdair nor I have ever cared much for hemlock flavored beverages of any type.

As you can imagine, these events have prompted much discussion between Alisdair and myself regarding age. For example, at what age is it appropriate to assault a district judge? At what age is it socially acceptable to drink large amounts of liquor and publicly insult your friends and berate your spouse? How many birthday parties must one have had before it is admissible to end the party early so one can drink alone and brood over impending death? As we took our daily constitutional, Alisdair and I meditated on these very questions, among many others. However, as our conversations inevitably do, the topic quickly turned to the fairer sex.

How young is too young? How old too old? As we watched les belles femmes taking their exercise in the park, we fiercely debated what is now known between us as the Age Question. Although we agree on many topics, this is one point on which Alisdair and I do not see eye to eye. As such, it is an issue that we wish you, dear Reader, to weigh in upon. First, let us present you with our arguments.

Unlike my Scottish chum, I am a passionate admirer of the youthful form. Pour moi, , nothing is more beautiful than a young girl in the bloom of juvenescence, strolling down a park path, attired in a lacy summer dress, parasol in hand, rosy cheeks and supple lips aglow with the natural radiance of youth. Her blond hair tangled and sun bleached, covering her shoulders and cascading down to the middle of her tanned back. Her neck, arms and legs lightly coated with a golden down - a down so soft and enticing that the gods reserved it for only the fairest of maidens. Her slim young legs, starting with her sweet lithe thighs and tapering down through her well turned calves to her delicate ankles. Her firm, budding breasts aching for the light caress of an experienced young man - one who can treat her exquisite body with all the reverence and appreciation it deserves... Pardon me. I can get quite carried away when reflecting upon these matters. The point, dear reader, is that the youthful female form is the embodiment of physical beauty and on this point I will make no concessions. So what then, is the issue? Unfortunately, the legislators and the arbiters of morality of this so-called "free country" have deemed my fascination perverse. Pursuing a girl who is younger than 18 is not only socially frowned upon, it is illegal.*

Now readers, I do not want to give you the wrong idea about old Gaspard. I know what you must be thinking "Vile man! Leave the children alone!" Worry not; I am not running around robbing unattended cradles or waiting outside of grammar schools with packages of rock candy. I am only suggesting that there is a certain sort of young girl who has much more experience, ( or desire for experience) than her demure demeanor betrays.

I remember when I was a young pup trying to break into the game - it was a maddening experience to be told that I was "far too young" by women ranging from 15 to 50. Therefore, If
I am approached by one of these eager girls, excited to make the acquaintance of a celebrated Lothario, who would I be to deny her the chance to further her carnal education? Gaspard Lerâteau has been accused of many things, but let ageism never be one of them!

I would now like to hear your thoughts on the matter, Alisdair.

*I find this law silly and hypocritical, considering the fact that founding father George Washington married Martha when she was merely a girl of eleven, while Benjamin Franklin, famed statesman and influential polygamist, had a veritable harem of child brides, none older than five and ten. However, for those interested in playing it safe, I will direct your attention here.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The New Year

Gutentag, meinen Freunden

Gaspard and I have decided to check in with you and discuss a few things. We would first like to commemorate the one year anniversary of the founding of The Rakish Life. On January 12th, 2009 (or New Years Eve of 2008, depending on your choice of calendar*) Gaspard and I first introduced ourselves to you. So, Happy Birthday - to us! Since our first entry, our year has been a blur of constant writing and editing. We have posted at a blistering pace - on average once every 18 days, but often taking breaks of months at a time to restore our constitutions - and have veritably flayed our already delicate nervous systems (Note: it is still unclear as to whether the nerves originate in the brain or in the heart; refer to the post on Health). The demands of this high paced technological lifestyle put us under too much undue strain. Which brings us to our next topic of conversation - New Year's Resolutions. With the new year rapidly approaching, tomorrow being the First of Ianuarius 2010, Gaspard and I have taken time to reflect on the past year and set resolutions for the upcoming one.

The importance of sticking to these cannot be stressed enough. Just last year, We resolved to work as little as possible. However, we failed miserably. As you well know, early in the month of September (September 23 by your Gregorian reckoning), we opened the depths of our knowledge, both esoteric and practical, to fathoming by all and sundry. The sheer volume of mail, by internet and by post, that we received almost immediately after extending this courtesy was the final shock. The toil required to answer even a tenth of these letters would in all probability have killed us. So, we elected to flee, taking only those letters that smelled of particularly intoxicating perfumes.

Consulting our medical encyclopaediae, we realized that our usual regimen of wine and friction would be insufficient; the only thing that could save us was the Cure. So, we immediately took ship (read: stowed away) to Europe and made our way to Baden-Baden. Parsifal was on in the Festspielhaus when we arrived, and everything looked like it would be all right. However, Gaspard lost all of our money playing baccarat in the casino, and we were forced to flee north to the Rheingau. Things looked bleak. However, on our first day in Wiesbaden, Gaspard redeemed himself by saving an aging matron from drowning in a natatorium. As it turned out, Frau Philippsthal has been a resident of Wiesbaden for fifteen years, having been using the spa cure to break a crippling laudanum addiction. Unfortunately, she also abets this dependence by secretly ordering three dozen phials of laudanum a month direct from Ludwigshafen. In return for saving her life, she allowed Gaspard to stay in her quarters for as long as he liked. Thankfully, the woman's perpetual opiate daze allowed both of us to come and go as we liked, so long as we never appeared before her at the same time. Despite our widely divergent appearances and facial hair styles, our lotophagian host was never able to tell that we were two completely different people.

This trying ordeal, the cause of which was over-expenditure of effort on our part, has led us to resolve to work even less than the year before. Because this blog is where the bulk of our energies are expended, expect to hear from us quarterly.

Although working less is of primary importance, the more resolutions we set, the fewer we can break, so here are a few more:

- I have resolved to stop frequenting houses of easy virtue, while due to an acute case of Yellow Fever, Gaspard has resolved to double his visits.

- We have resolved to stop patronizing our local Polish deli for reasons that will be kept between Stanislaw and ourselves.

- We have resolved to finish our Discourse of the Superiority of Man

- Gaspard has resolved to finish his Triptych depicting the Life of St. Hilarion, the commission for which was paid by the Archdiocese of New York over 3 years ago. He has also resolved to learn how to paint.

- I resolve to cure the Laudanum addiction that I picked up while in Wiesbaden.

- We both resolve to stop eating fattening ethnic foods, which is a shame because I really like spaghetti.

- Scratch that, we both resolve to stop eating.

- As a gesture of uncharacteristic sympathy in These Trying Economic Times, we resolve to stop swindling the rich and instead to focus our efforts on the super rich and ultra rich.

- Gaspard resolves not to pick up women at Sunday Mass, and will instead wait until he sees them in the vestibule after Mass ends. I will restrict my efforts to weekday Mass.

*While we can appreciate the accomplishments of Pope Gregory XIII, most specifically his updates to the Index of Forbidden Books and his passionate anti-Protestant foreign policies, Gaspard and I bitterly oppose the Gregorian calendar which not only cuts the year short by 13 days, but also favors the landholding class by adding almost a fortnight of rent per year! Instead we favor the intricacies and leap year errors of the classic Julian calendar.