Damocles was a minor official at the court of Dionysius II, a ruler in Italy, in the 4th century BC. Fawning over his king, Damocles raved about how lucky Dionysius was - power, wealth, everything at his command, and surrounded by all the luxuries the world had to offer. Dionysius listened to this for a time, then offered to trade places for a day, to let Damocles experience the monarchy first-hand.
Damocles couldn't say 'Yes' fast enough. No sooner had he sat down on the plush throne, looking around and reveling in the abundance, when he happened to glance up: there was a large, exceptionally sharp sword hanging over his head. 'Wha--What's that?' he stammered.
The king replied 'That is the burden I live under every day. It hangs by a single strand of horsehair, and might fall at any time. But I must put aside all thought of my own safety, and my life, so that I can rule effectively.'
No matter how he shifted or where he turned, Damocles found he could only sit on the throne if he was under the sword. The tension was too much - he quickly vacated his newly-acquired office, and Dionysius took up the reins once more.
Photo #6 is "A picture of a person you'd love to trade places with for a day." And no, the picture above isn't it!
I thought about people like the 20-something who bought the Spelling mansion (well, her father bought it for her, but you know what I mean). I considered someone with political clout, like Hillary Clinton and Angela Merkle. Now that she doesn't have a show, Oprah could take a long vacation - or even just for one day, lol. Or how about someone like Catherine Deneuve? Jane Fonda? Helen Mirren! Oh, wait, I know - who's Orlando Bloom living with these days? Yeh, I'd trade places with her for a day. There are so many other 'lives' I'd love to try on!
I have a sneaking suspicion, tho, that it would prove to be the same kind of double-bind that Damocles discovered in the sword over his head. From the outside these public figures and celebrities seem to have the most exciting lives, with money, power, travel, and staffs of servants. And it may look very different from the inside.
Nonetheless, the winner is (drumroll, please):
Aw, c'mon, you Faithful Readers know how I feel about the new Duchess of Cambridge - the girl's got it all. And d'you know how I'd like to spend that one day?
I'd want to go to two places: Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle. I want to see all the goodies - the paintings, the sculptures, the jewelry, the furnishings, the porcelain. Everything the public doesn't get to see, and everything that's in the private apartments.
She was an art history major. Just think of the treasure chest she has access to. Me, now, I spent the day in the laundry room and the kitchen. Ah well. A girl can dream, lol.
Goodnight, Sparklers, wherever you are!