1.Joy is not “toxic positivity.” It does not insist that we pretend things are better than they are. It does not refuse to face grief or sorrow. But it does say that they are not all there is and that they are not all that needs to be faced.
Mary knew too late the bus was due in five minutes.She applied some sunscreen and combed her hair gently with a cake fork while she wondered why she was going out.She looked into her phone camera to get her hair in order
Alas, the familiar footsteps of Annie were heard on the patio.In she flew dressed in red and brown like a robin in winter except she wore pure wool
How do you like my outfit, she cried girlishly
Mary stared at her, noting the pale beige face makeup from Max Tucker and brick coloured lipstick from Wigan’s Makeup Outlet Store where Annie loved to browse for days on end.
I think the brick coloured lipstick does not go with the scarlet jacket,Annie.
Oh, don’t worry.It’s the in thing now to clash
That might be true but men won’t know it’s a fashion unless they read Vogue.Most don’t.
Never mind all that. I’ve brought Emile a new blanket
He’s not a dog,you know.Do cats need blankets?
If you drove it would protect the seat.
I might go round the bend.If we drive we almost certainly would meet bends
Do fish get the bends,mewed Emile?
We don’t know that.It only proves that a question can be asked in a human language but within that system there is no way of answering it,Mary told him quietly, thinking of Wittgenstein her husband’s former tutor.
First of all, fish probably can’t speak English or understand it.
How amazing, the little cat replied.How stupid can you get?
Well a fish would think you were stupid for not being able to live in the sea.
So true,Emile sighed.Shall I try?
Don’t be so ridiculous,Annie whispered.The sea in not near Knittingham.Mary can’t drive and you may drown.Then St Peter will be reading out all your sins
Can cats commit sins, asked Emile with surprise
Yes, because you know you have a choice.You can bite my hand or resist the temptation
I don’t feel like biting it now so if I did it would not give me pleasure.
For God’s sake, stop arguing.Anyone would think you’d been to the Synagogue, today Mary shouted
But in a Synagogue men argue about the Torah not about cats swimming,Emile replied
But then it gets to be a habit,Mary finished.
Still many other people argue,Annie reminded her.
But God does not want it,Mary said
How do you know? He/She may love to hear it.It will provoke thought
And it may provoke a Flood or you being turned into a pillow of salt,Mary screamed
Pillar of Salt,Annie corrected her
Why do people not turn into pepper, the cat asked wisely.
There is no pepper in the Dead Sea, the women agreed.~And black pepper/white pepper could be PIC
They have red peppers in the Market.Annie mused.And yellow too
But where does that leave us?Where was Mary going to and why has she not left for the bus stop? Was it something wicked that she was trying to do in secret?
We’ll see tomorrow I expect