Sunday, 27 May 2007

Feeling good

The advertising tagline on a packet of breakfast cereal: 'helps you feel good on the inside!' (And, actually, a swift google reveals that that's a phrase applied to a variety of health products.)

It's an expression that naturally leads us to contemplate the alternative; for what would it feel like to 'feel good on the outside'? This is to think beyond the obvious point that feelings are inevitably 'on the inside.' It is to note that the goodness too can only be 'on the inside'. There's no outside to goodness. The closest we come is that epidermal sense of goodness travelling from the outside to the inside, where the feeling will collect itself; but even that is a kind of illusion. No such word as extrabonum.

But of course 'inside' here is a euphemism for 'gut', to be implicitly distinguished from (say) the head. That's even more interesting; as if the line separating our insides and outsides is drawn along the line of the neck ...

No comments: