Well, THAT scared the ever lovin' crap outta of me! I know it was meant to do otherwise. I realize the reviewer was reaching towards his/her best truth. In fact, it was a good sentence. However, I wonder if the concept of "a lifetime" is flexible, depending on your age?
I am going to tell you my theory on all this and (be forewarned) I will generalize like crazy. None of it will be new or insightful. Like on Battlestar Galactica, this has all happened before and it will happen again. Here goes.
When you are young a lifetime seems mostly ahead of you. The idea of building a life is formidable, but also exciting. I like to think time is meant to be filled with joy and wonder. The young still seem to know that. Youth is about hope, anticipation, and energy. You learn about yourself and so much more. If the young tend to romanticize the future, it is their right. Youth is a dangerous, wonderful, adventurous stage.
Middle age is when you might consider your accomplishments and bask in your strength, or vice versa. You've probably had your ass kicked a time or two. In middle age people are a bit more savvy. A lifetime is no longer an idea, it has become a concrete reality. Middle age is when you finally figure out the mechanics, the process of living a life. At this point a person is usually sustained by responsibilities, duties, and love. Middle aged people are busy, busy, busy. It can be a stable, fulfilling time in a life.
Older people know they are living on borrowed time. They realize there is an end to all this. If you are lucky enough to retire you eventually find yourself freed from routine distractions. Old age can be messy, fraught with physical limitations, health issues, money worries, and unresolved fears. Oh yeah, and sometimes you leak. However, your time is your own.
I am not really "old" yet, but I am no longer middle aged by any stretch of the imagination. As I age, I begin to think old age has more in common with youth than with middle age because time has that lovely transcendent quality I was too busy to notice in middle age. Now I have time, once again, to experience the moment with eyes wide open. Old age is a glorious and terrifying time of life. It depends on the person to balance that conflict. It is a struggle, I'll tell you that.
So when I read a sentence like "...she succeeds in conveying 'the infinity of moments' that make up a lifetime" I am not thinking, "Oh isn't that a beautiful thought?" Nor am I thinking "Hmmm, I'll have to remember that one when I have a few moments to reflect." I am thinking "Holy Shit! A lifetime has a lot of moments to live through, but they are definitely not infinite."
|Yep, winter is coming.|