Saturday, January 2, 2021

Sherlockian Camelot

When I was a kid, there was this musical about King Arthur. You may have heard of it . . . Camelot?

Yeah. There was a movie of it, I think, where an actor named Sir Richard Burton would sing this very mopey song at the end about how there was once this great place called "Camelot," and even though it didn't exist any more at the end of the movie, people would remember it and go, "Yeah, that place existed once and it was great."

As a kid, with my whole life ahead of me, that just did not resonate with me at all.

And when I got into Sherlock Holmes and started moving into the greater Sherlockian world, there were those who really wanted to go on about a similar sort of place that existed before any of us. In the 1930s or 1940s, something like that. These guys named Morley, Starrett, and something, having a grand moment in the past that we would never know anything like, that we could never rise to the standard of, that was gone forever and yet would be with us always.

Sherlockian Camelot.

Echoes of that old actor singing that old song from that old musical.

Standing at the start of another year, it's natural to look back, think of the really great moments in life. Live long enough, get a little lucky, and you get some of those moments. You get a Camelot, when things seem like they were as good as they could ever be. And they're yours, not some people you didn't know at some time you didn't know, doing things you don't really know. But even at that, the past isn't a place where people live. Memories of food aren't food.

Not sure why I thought of Camelot this morning, as our most recent memories are probably not a place we're going to want to hang in the years ahead. The hopes for 2021 are a little bigger than for a normal new year. It's got a real phoenix-from-the-ashes feeling. Definitely no time to be singing about the glories of a fallen Round Table.

And maybe that was the point of that memory. Time to look ahead.

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