Questions on the meaning of life
Ever since I was a toddler I’ve pondered over the meaning of existence. I must have been a right bundle of laughs, you’ll say, but in truth, I think that that’s something toddlers do, in between playing with Fisher Price and watching children’s television, and it’s perhaps not at all surprising as up until the age of four we apparently remember our past life.
Now, I don’t know what I remembered in those days, and if I was really honest perhaps I’d admit ice cream was the only predominant thought in my wee head, but all the same, I have a distinct memory of sitting on my bed one morning at three years old contemplating why I was here. Of course, my memory may deceive me and I may have been wondering how on earth I was going to get into my dungarees that day as I’d somehow got left alone to get dressed that morning – but it wasn’t the only occasion when I questioned the meaning of existence. Perhaps the most memorable occasion was when I saw the photo of the monkey and the barrel organ.
The photo was on my mum’s bedside table and showed my parents with my three brothers in a street in London before I was born, all five dressed in slightly silly flares, standing smiling by a barrel organ as my eldest brother held a tiny monkey dressed in a miniature waistcoat.
“Why aren’t I in the picture?” I asked one day.
“You are,” said my brothers. “Look!” And they pointed to the monkey.
“Oh,” I said in bewilderment because it did seem rather strange that I’d looked so different as a baby.
As you can imagine, a number of questions filled my head - how come I’d been so dark and hairy, why had I worn such a ridiculous looking waistcoat without a fuss? And I can tell you now, nothing makes you question the meaning of life like such a thing. Oh, it wasn’t finding out I was a monkey that was hard – that didn’t take long to accept. It was later on when I found out I wasn’t one that was hard. It can be quite a let down.
See you later. I'm off for a banana.