I certainly do! Back then, a luxury watches that go on through generations and gain in value. Those are works of art, and certain command extraordinary prices. You only need sit in on an auction to see that the most beautiful and rare can cost as much as an apartment. The I’m talking about came at a reasonable price, and even then it wasn’t something everyone could afford. I imagine my parents had to make a small financial sacrifice in order to buy it. In the late 1960s, you were given a to mark an important occasion. You didn’t just walk into a shop saying, “Hey, maybe I’ll buy a !”. This was something you’d think about first. It was rarely an impulse buy.wasn’t as commonplace as it is today. By that I don’t mean
No, but I do remember the occasion. My parents gave it to me for my tenth birthday. It came in a leatherette box with a black velvet interior, and there were several straps that you could switch around. But the thing that most fascinated me was that the hands glowed in the dark. I used to wake up during the night so I could watch them move around the dial. It was like early science fiction, and me, I thought I was James Bond!
Absolutely. A ten-year-old, in my day at least, had no notion of the value or the price of things. I grew up in a family that found it hard to make ends meet. Money was always the topic of conversation over dinner, because we never had enough! My mother was born in Scotland during the Depression years. Nothing mattered more to her than having a roof over your head and food on the table.
Objectively, I couldn’t see myself going in to the office every day. That’s not the kind of life I wanted. Nor did I aspire to becoming a suit-and-tie man. That actually bugs me when I play Fox Mulder in The X-Files. When he puts on his white shirt and black tie, boy does he get on my nerves! I hate it when people are constantly checking their watch too, and even more so when they’re with someone. It gives the impression you’re a drag and the other person is wondering how they can cut short the conversation.
Loads of sneakers. I’ve always dressed casually and there was no reason why that should change. I love the beach. I love running or walking on sand. To be honest, I’ve never been good at spending for spending’s sake. It makes me nervous, especially when there’s a hefty price tag attached. Of course there are exceptions. For example, one day I went out and bought a good dive watch with a Swiss movement. I didn’t buy it to show others I’d moved up the social ladder. I just wanted a reliable watch that wouldn’t let me down after a couple of swims in the ocean.
I’d have been a teacher. I graduated in English literature from Princeton University, not with the idea of making my living as a writer, but to teach. Some of my students have done well, and I’m proud of that. Then again, there were always a couple of idiots in the bunch who would sit down in class and plug in their Walkman. How in the world do you expect them to concentrate on an analysis of Saint-John Perse? If they’d been constantly looking at their watch, I wouldn’t have put up with that either. You could say my lessons were pretty dull!
I can’t decide between the one where a toad jumps out of a corpse’s rotting flesh, the one that shows a guy devouring someone’s liver, or the one where another guy survives by sucking the fat out of an obese woman!
Definitely Richard Yates. He’s the author of Revolutionary Road, one of the most moving books I’ve read these past couple of years. He builds up his characters in the most intelligent way. Yates was a manic-depressive who knew how to get inside his protagonists’ minds. His life was like a novel in itself. He was a disruptive genius who ended up teaching writing at Alabama University. He died penniless. For ages, he’d been promising his fans one last novel. After he died, they spent days searching his ramshackle home, until one of his students finally found the manuscript. When you have someone of that calibre as a teacher, no way are you tempted to look at your watch!