It was 1957 – and I’m giving my age away! – another century – when I boarded an ocean liner as a boy of twelve, leaving England forever.
Why is that important? I guess, for me, because here I was, at twelve years old, on the cusp of a new era, and I didn’t even know it, and I guess nobody else did either. The changes that occurred right after these final years of the decade of the 50s, were pivotal.
Cunard continued to ply the waves of the Atlantic (and elsewhere, too, I imagine), up to 1971, as far as I know. Other carriers got out of the business. I named this article “The Last Voyage” because for me, that was a metaphor for the changing times; in hindsight, the end of an era.
There is much written about narcissism, but since most people haven’t had any actual experience with a living, breathing narcissist – or may have had without knowing it – they probably don’t realize how dangerous and how ubiquitous they are. I mean, they’re everywhere!
If you haven’t had enough already of talking heads discussing Trump ad infinitum, I’ll add my little footnote to the controversy.
No, I didn’t actually have an affair with an Edsel. The Edsel was an automobile, even though it was taken off the market because its radiator grill resembled female genitalia. That was the rumor.
This was an interesting if somewhat bizarre way of looking at cars. Since time immemorial, automobiles have been associated with sex. Back in the 1920s, the Tin Lizzy, Henry Ford’s first creation off the assembling line, set the standard for all the romantic hijinks that followed. Booze and sex and automobiles just about defined the culture of the young, whichever decade you pick. The older generation looked down on all this sinning and chose respectability. Their automobiles were sedate Buicks or Chryslers, or a similar model from one of the other manufacturers.
As I mentioned in the first part of my thoughts on the Ford Edsel, I abandoned my Borgward with undignified haste, and bought a Volkswagen Beetle.
Looking back, I do remember now that I sold the Borgward to some guy who wanted to race it. Well, the car had a lot of torque, but little else. In any case, it didn’t matter to me, because I was going to lose it, trash it, or sell it, somehow, as I entered a new phase of my life: I was getting married to my first wife.