“Diogenes firmly believed two things: first, that society was corrupt; and second, that virtue was best demonstrated in practice. In the first respect, Diogenes’ point of view was perhaps not dissimilar to many contemporary cynics. People tell lies to themselves. They entertain self-serving fantasies that justify lives of material gain, while they destroy their health and peace of mind by glutting themseves on food and wine and worrying incessantly about the future.”
Twenty years had taken their toll. I hadn’t seen Andy since our high school reunion. At first, I barely recognised him. There was more of him than I remembered. His face was broad, carved with crevasses of flesh. The hams and T-bar shoulders that had made him a star on the rugby field now hefted an imposing gut. His hand absorbed mine, pumping fiercely. He seemed to have swelled in size, as if his whole body were inflated with air.
If the suit didn’t give it away, you could tell from his manner that he’d done well for himself. Andy had done a bit of everything. Five years’ work in the WA mines had set him up to make some smart investments. Andy was a ‘self-made’ man, with a dozen businesses behind him and two failed marriages along the way. These days he worked as a consultant to the coal…
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