"Wisdom is now so cheap and abundant that it floods over us from calendar pages, tea bags, bottle caps, and mass e-mail messages forwarded by well-meaning friends"
Jonathan Haidt, The Happiness Hypothesis
"I think that’s what happens every time we reach out to another human being. We fill a hidden reservoir - what I’d call build an invisible bridge - of love. When we do that, we are doing the greatest human good possible."
Six Questions of Socrates
"Sometimes it’s a form of love just to talk to somebody that you have nothing in common with and still be fascinated by their presence."
And, oh, she had been broken.
She hid it well, but Ross knew from personal experience that once you had put the pieces back together, even though you might look intact, you were never quite the same as you’d been before the fall.
Knowing yourself, your passions, your failings, your strengths, your needs, and your hopes is probably more important than any other sort of knowledge you will ever have.
Now that I’ve finished 1Q84, I’ll start on Norwegian Wood. It looks like an easy read, so hopefully I’ll be able to finish it by the end of this week before Uni starts again.
Bought two new books today! Both by Haruki Murakami. I’m going to be so upset when Uni starts as it means I probably won’t have much free time to read :/
After a LONG time, I’ve finally finished 1Q84! Had to put it aside for so long due to Uni .____. Set in the year 1984, it follows the lives of Tengo and Aomame as they separately enter a sort of parallel universe which Aomame names 1Q84. There’s a lot of comment regarding writing and literature, but also humourous moments. The concept of the air chrysalis and the description of their construction was magical - most times it felt like if I looked hard enough, I would be able to see the white silken strands in the air. Definitely a novel worth reading.
Time to start another Haruki Murakami novel x3
“But who can say what’s best? That’s why you need to grab whatever chance you have of happiness where you find it, and not worry about other people too much. My experience tells me that we get no more than two or three such chances in a life time, and if we let them go, we regret it for the rest of our lives.”
“No truth can cure the sorrow we feel from losing a loved one. No truth, no sincerity, no strength, no kindness can cure that sorrow. All we can do is see it through to the end and learn something from it, but what we learn will be no help in facing the next sorrow that comes to us without warning.”
When I was little I used to pour salt on slugs. I liked watching them dissolve before my eyes. Cruelty is always sort of fun until you realise that something’s getting hurt.
It would be one thing to be a loser if it meant no one paid attention to you, but in school, it means you’re actively sought out. You’re the slug, and they’re holding all the salt. And they haven’t developed a conscience.
There’s a word we learned in social studies: schadenfreude. It’s when you enjoy watching someone else suffer. The real question, though, is why? I think part of it is just self-preservation. And part of it is because a group always feels more like a group when it’s banded together against an enemy. It doesn’t matter if that enemy has never done anything to hurt you - you just have to pretend you hate someone even more than you hate yourself.
You know why salt works on slugs? Because it dissolves in the water that’s part of slug’s skin, so the water inside its body starts to flow out. The slug dehydrates. This works with snails, too. And with leeches. And with people like me.
With any creature, really, too thin-skinned to stand up for itself.
So much of the language of love was like that: you devoured someone with your eyes, you drank in the sight of him, you swallowed him whole.
Love was sustenance, broken down and beating through your bloodstream.
I think a person’s life is supposed to be like a DVD. You can see the version everyone else sees, or you can choose the director’s cut - the way he wanted you to see it, before everything else got in the wy.
There are menus, probably, so that you can start at the good spots and not have to relive the bad ones. You can measure your life by the number of scenes you’ve survived, or the minutes you’ve been stuck there.
Probably, though, life is more like one of those dumb video surveillance tapes. Grainy, no matter how hard you stare at it. And looped: the same thing, over and over.
"You never cared about anything that happened in my life when nobody was watching, so don’t think you can just start now."
Josie, Nineteen Minutes
Ask a random kid today if she wants to be popular and she’ll tell you no, even if the truth is that if she was in a desert dying of thirst and had the choice between a glass of water and instant popularity, she’d probably choose the latter. See, you can’t admit to wanting it, because that makes you less cool. To be truly popular, it has to look like it’s something you are, when in reality, it’s what you make yourself.
I wonder if anyone works any harder at anything than kids do at being popular. I mean, even air-traffic controllers and the president of United States take vacations, but look at your average high school student, and you’ll see someone who’s putting in time twenty-four hours a day, for the entire length of the school year.
So how do you crack that inner sanctum? Well, here’s the catch: it’s not up to you. What’s important is what everyone else thinks of how you dress, what you eat for lunch, what shows you TiVo, what music is on your iPod.
I’ve always sort of wondered, though: If everyone else’s opinion is what matters, then do you ever really have one of your own?