Thursday, April 24, 2014

Theme: Excerpt

  • According to the girls, their clients are largely either “losers” or “wogs” (churki). When there are a lot of clients, they joke that there must be a holiday at the mental hospital. “We know both sides of men. Guys are jerks.”Read more
  • An excerpt from 'Sky Rat' by Rauan KlassnikRead more
  • On the following morning, Harran Derrick was up and about by a little after six o'clock, and a quarter of an hour later had breakfast in the kitchen of the ranch house, preferring not to wait until the Chinese cook laid the table in the regular dining-room. He scented a hard day's work ahead of him, and was anxious to be at it betimes.Read more
  • Once upon a time and a very good time it was there was a moocow coming down along the road and this moocow that was down along the road met a nicens little boy named baby tuckoo.... His father told him that story: his father looked at him through a glass: he had a hairy face. He was baby tuckoo. The moocow came down the road where Betty Byrne lived: she sold lemon platt.Read more
  • David introduced me to a man named Roy Hardeman. He was not good-looking, but his policeman’s uniform, and the idea that he was a policeman, excited me. It was a new, glamorous world. In all things, it is the beginnings and ends that are interesting. Or was I wrong about that?Read more
  • Sometimes when the maples are green with leaf, the wind gentle and not bringing too much heat; and the sky is clear or its cumulus dissolves in the evening air, and the day’s last sparrows go to roost; and the girls are meditative in both body and mind, the boys not too puerile, people of all ages out for a stroll; then well-being is palpable, owing to something other than one’s net worth in any mercenary sense. And sometimes Moonface, her shoulders hunched, walks the crucible of the street, returning from a night spent with some young man or another. I note how lonely her aspect is, how unmet. How useless I am to her in her search for meaning.Read more
  • Walking slowly down bustling streets is a particular pleasure. Awash in the haste of others, it’s a dip in the surf. But my dear fellow citizens of Berlin don’t make it easy, no matter how nimbly you weave out of their way. I always catch wary glances when I try to play the flâneur among the industrious. I believe they take me for a pick-pocket.Read more
  • It was a most heavenly day in May of the year (1800) when I first beheld and first entered this mighty wilderness, the city—no, not the city, but the nation—of London. Often since then, at distances of two and three hundred miles or more from this colossal emporium of men, wealth, arts, and intellectual power, have I felt the sublime expression of her enormous magnitude in one simple form of ordinary occurrence.Read more
  • So how do people with autism see the world, exactly? Us, and only us, can ever know the answer to that one! Sometimes I actually pity you for not being able to see the beauty of the world in the same way we do. Really, our vision of the world can be incredible, just incredible...You might reply, "But the eyes we all use to look at things work the same way, right?" Read more
  • The most salient feature of our world is that God is dead. Or at least he appears to be dead. Perhaps he is on life support. Or maybe he has become an embalmed version of what he once was, appearing lifelike, but really dead. Nietzsche, formally and most famously, pronounced God dead. But perhaps the truth is closer to what Emerson said, less famously, half a century earlier: we live as if God were dead.Read more
  • It was the summer of 1989 in Bodrum, a beautiful seaside resort on the southwestern coast of Turkey, soaked in sun, history, and nightlife. I was on vacation and it had been a long day. I had taken the bus from Iráklion, where I had caught the second-worst case of food poisoning I had ever had in my life, including two days in bed throwing up with backbreaking pain.Read more
  • COPENHAGEN, SPRING 2010: What I do not wish to reveal will be discov­ered anyway, because I will inevitably tell it by leav­ing it out of the record. Such is how desire works. So consider this: thirty-five kilometres north of Copenhagen, on a morning of washed-out light that is not uncommon to the region in April, I was follow­ing at an ever-increasing distance for the space of an hour a Middle-Eastern woman in her thirties through a field of heather stretching for acres, which were full of grouse that rose up in a great clattering confusion as I waded through, as if I had aroused them from a sleep that had lasted all of their lives. Read more
  • You remember your childhood. Your tow-headed, reddish-tinged mother, who yelled after you all day like a Paraguayan peasant chasing her donkey. And your father flattened in front of the TV, murmuring curses against the people flickering on the screen. Your grades at school were average, pathetic, as you competed against the ones at the top of the class with their brilliance adapted to hedge-hopping teachers’ brains who flitted from idea to another on stage like macaques.Read more
  • I had left Master Thomas's house, and went to live with Mr. Covey, on the 1st of January, 1833. I was now, for the first time in my life, a field hand. In my new employment, I found myself even more awkward than a country boy appeared to be in a large city. I had been at my new home but one week before Mr. Covey gave me a very severe whipping, cutting my back, causing the blood to run, and raising ridges on my flesh as large as my little finger. Read more
  • This is the true story of one of the most mesmerizing riddles in Western history and, in particular, of the unsung American woman who would very likely have solved it had she only lived a little longer.Read more
  • Paul’s father was 28 and Paul’s mother was 24 when they alone (out of a combined fifteen to twenty-five siblings) left Taiwan for America. Paul was born in Virginia six years later, in 1983, when his brother was 7. Paul was 3 when the family moved to Apopka, a pastoral suburb near Orlando, Florida.Read more
  • When Tina Fly was eight years old, she put a firecracker in a classmate’s ear. Tina was a nearly illiterate child. The incessant teasing by other students compounded her behavioral problems, like the fire cracker incident, and eventually she was put in special classes. Her mother, Genia Jackson, remembers a doctor prescribing Ritalin for Tina when she was nine, which was the beginning of years of trips to the physician and psychologist.Read more
  • Those who have read Proust, and even those who haven't, all know about the episode with the madeleine and tisane. As this is the scene that begins the Recherche, it is especially worth returning to given its the centenary of the publication of Swann's Way: not only does "the whole of Combray ... spr[i]ng into being ... from my cup of tea," but this is the entry point of the entire novel sequence — a stunning meditation on the difference between voluntary and involuntary memory; time and the palpable sense of it being both finite and infinite; and a consideration of the creative wellspring from which all art springs.Read more
  • What happens when one names another, when one draws them into language— is that the moment in which they disappear?; when they begin slipping away, into nothingness.Read more
  • There was never a happier day for Elspeth Baillie than the day she was plucked from her old life, the only life she had thought possible, nipped in the bud and transported across oceans to be planted again in the warmth of the sun. She had been a poor stunted bramble in her home ground: nineteen wearying years that felt like forty.Read more
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