SupersedureMonday, December 21, 2009
While in the pay of the Argentine navy I was seconded to the US Naval Advisory Group. This meant that I had a secretary and lots of privileges that many of my fellow Argentine conscripts. I had access to large tins of Edgeworth pipe tobacco and other goodies that came from the PX. But I had to such boring and onerous tasks as filing US Naval reports. Many were bulletins that superseded earlier ones. I had to find the older documents and replace them with the new ones. The idea was that the superseded document could contain dangerous instructions that had not been caught until the new bulletin came in.
The verb supersede was a popular verb in the US Navy and I really don’t think that replace quite means the same thing. As a way of showing this I have as an example a photograph I took of Rebecca when she must have been two or three. When Rosemary saw it she smiled and loved it. In fact in was her favourite for some years. The frame is over the fireplace mantel of our den. If I were to put it away Rosemary would notice immediately.
For me the picture has been superseded by all the rest that came after. I cannot even look at the picture with the nostalgia of the little girl that was. Rebecca is much more interesting as she grows up. There is a superficiality (of someone who has not lived enough to have any kind of depth) in her cuteness that contrasts most unfavourably with her present self. She is more dynamic, more intelligent and more argumentative. She is almost an adult and I find her to be a good friend.
I wonder if this latest picture which I took on Saturday will soon be superseded by something else.