It's all very well this retirement lark but after a time it all becomes too much of a muchness. One shop merges into another, one daytime TV series about property development morphs into another about antique collecting. Days line up in uniform columns marking a featureless trail to oblivion. There is nothing to get your teeth into - which is just as well as your teeth probably fell out from lack of use the day before yesterday. I became so busy doing nothing that I hadn't time to blog, and the longer your blog remains silent, the louder that silence becomes. You can't break such a profound silence with something inconsequential, something trivial. You must wait until you solve the mystery of Fermat's Last Theorem or at least the mystery of what makes Nick Clegg tick.
The problem with all this is that if my blogging is about anything it is about trivia : it is a hymn to the inconsequential, a paean to the meaningless. I don't do grand announcements, I do pointless asides. I'm a stream of semi-consciousness blogger. Too much thought can become terminal for me and my kind.
I was vaguely thinking about this earlier this evening - you see what I mean, I have been thinking far too much for my own good - whilst digitally flicking through some photographs I took in Todmorden last week. You know me, I am always drawn to pubs or buildings that used to be pubs, and I had taken a picture of what used to be the Freemason's Arms (some ne're-do-well has now turned it into flats). And there, on the central pediment, was a stone plaque stating in its own ornamental way, BMB Ltd or possibly MBB Ltd. Obviously the name of a brewer, but which? It was not one I was familiar with, and I pride myself with being over-familiar with many a brewer. So I dug and delved, looked up this and looked up that until I eventually solved the mystery. Whilst the original Freemason's Arms dated back to the 1830s, it was eventually sold in 1913 to the Burnley brewing firm of Edward Stocks Massey. They pulled the old pub down and the new building was erected in 1923. It was one of the first brick buildings in Todmorden - stone is the traditional building material in these parts - and for this reason it was always known as the "Red House". When the new building was erected, whilst brick was used for the main fabric, stone was reserved for the two important inscriptions - the name of the pub (The Freemason's Arms) and the sign of the brewers (Massey's Burnley Brewery or MBB). I felt a small wave of satisfaction at solving this little mystery, the kind of satisfaction I would in the past bore all my blogging friends with.
And then I thought, why not? It's time I came back. This retirement lark can be put off until another day. To hell with the important, long live the inconsequential.