I remember my son Tom had a great penchant for the Argos catalogue and remember him as a little lad sitting up in bed happily surveying all the stuff he would like to have possessed whilst listening to the Mozart Horn Concerto that he invariably had on the cassette player at bedtime. He would have been lucky if he ever acquired a tiny percentage of those things he fancied, as we were pretty broke when he was small. But I recall the wise words of Bertrand Russell who said, “To be without some of the things you want is an indispensable part of happiness.” Tom was always a happy contented child who easily accepted what he could or could not have, and let’s face it, sometimes a thing is far more enigmatic and satisfying in our imaginations than it is in reality. I recall getting a wonderful pedal car for Christmas when I was four - subsequently took a bend too sharply in Aberdare Park on its test drive, landed on my head - and never went near that car again! However, I played happily with the giant box it came in until it fell to bits and recall shedding a tear when it was put out for the rubbish men.
Finally, gentle reader, I come to the confession part of this post ! Brace yourselves!
On Saturday last, my wife caught me browsing the Tool Station catalogue before breakfast. It seems where I was once mesmerised by the Marineville Control Centre from Stingray, or ached to own a Thunderbird Two, I now find myself drooling over the Makita RP1801X Plunge Router or Milwaukee M12BDDXKIT - 202C 4-in-1 Drill Driver.
Maybe I should disguise this Aladdin’s cave of secret desires in a brown paper wrapping, or better still, conceal it under another cover, perhaps one torn from a great work by Marcel Proust, or the collected poems of Ezra Pound, perhaps?