We are often asked, “Business or pleasure,” especially when travelling — at hotels, border patrol checkpoints, and airlines. The phrase has become so ubiquitous, that when I drove past a Citizen’s Business Bank, I immediately wondered about a Citizen’s Pleasure Bank.
Sometimes there seems to be a surfeit of good things, especially those that come all at once, and it’s hard to appreciate each pleasure appropriately. Well, with pleasure banking, you can have your cake, and eat it, too. In a manner of speaking. In the example of cake, you can always eat a piece and freeze the rest, but what about all the glorious sunsets you were too jaded to go out to see, the travels that you were too tired to enjoy, the funny antics of children or pets that inexplicably annoyed you, the friends who visited when you wanted to be alone? With pleasure banking, you could experience the pleasure when it would be most pleasurable for you. Perhaps you could even gain interest on the pleasurable occurrence before you take it out of the the bank to live it.
We do have a memory bank, of course, but the interest gained on remembered experiences is not compounded the same way as an experience we are currently living. With pleasure banking, though, when you finally claimed the deferred pleasure, it would be a true experience, not a memory. At least not until after you experienced it.
I doubt I would have much to deposit — I try to live for the day, and if I’m too tired to enjoy, I would still hang to on the pleasure, no matter how unpleasurable it is at the moment. Also, I would worry that in the future, interest would decline, and the pleasure would be even less pleasant. Still, even though I enjoyed every day of my cross country road trip, if I had been able to save some of the driving days where nothing much happened except driving, today I would be able to experience the zen-like nature of highway driving without actually having to leave my room.
At the pleasure bank, would also be able to borrow other people’s pleasures, and as with monetary banking, those pleasures will still be there for the person who deposited them. So, while I might not want to defer my own pleasures, I sure would love to experience some of the wonders of the world depositors might have saved, without my actually having the tedium of travelling to far distant places. (Hmmm. Makes me wonder how the accountants of the pleasure bank would determine the cost. Pleasure minus tedium, perhaps. Or maybe you’d have to pay more interest for pure pleasure without the tedium.)
So, would you open an account in a pleasure bank? If so, what would you deposit there? What would you borrow?
Pat Bertram is the author of the suspense novels Unfinished, Madame ZeeZee’s Nightmare, Light Bringer, More Deaths Than One, A Spark of Heavenly Fire, and Daughter Am I. Bertram is also the author of Grief: The Great Yearning, “an exquisite book, wrenching to read, and at the same time full of profound truths.” Connect with Pat on Google+. Like Pat on Facebook.