A bad cold kept me from doing anything yesterday, so I sat and read a couple collections of Orwell’s essays. Superb stuff all around, but I had to admit that I resembled some of his remarks on Charles Dickens:

I could do without the horde of children, and I prefer to do my own chores rather than rely on servants, but quibbling details aside, yes, this sounds like an acceptable deal to me. Home life is always enough, indeed. Forever in a kind of love and forever in a kind of selfishness and self-enjoyment, you might say. Pace Orwell, I don’t see anything contradictory about combining purposelessness and vitality. “Purposelessness” doesn’t mean that you sit around in a vegetative state; it simply means that you’re capable of generating depth and meaning from within an outwardly simple, ordinary life. I’m never bored, and I’ve always got things to do (with not enough time to do them in). It’s just that none of those things would be impressive to anyone else. My life is like a bonsai tree — insignificant by your standards, a wealth of meaningful details by mine.