I think I may have accidentally sent this back privately when I wanted to publish it. Oops.
/lit hum only got better with age [this summer] and like I’m still not over it at all and I feel like no one else understands/
and I answered:
Don’t worry, I ~totally~ feel that. I expected to barely tolerate Lit Hum and prefer CC, but as soon as I got to the part in the Iliad where Achilles absolutely loses it over Patroclus I knew it’d be a good year. My professor was amazing and I met my best friend at Columbia in that class. Also, I can’t even begin to describe how important and effective lateral learning is. And the class totally changed the way I read and think about loopmyself and the world – about memory and storytelling and truth and intimacy and language’s complex relationship with truthful sincerity – and most of all the good life. Especially Homer, Woolf, and Plato. Alcibiades is beyond great but I still feel like Diotima was also onto something with respect to true love. And of course I’m obsessed with trying to wrap my arms around Woolf and her gorgeous language and insights, thanks to To the Lighthouse. I feel absolutely horrible for not finishing Austen or Dostoevsky though – maybe it isn’t over yet after all? Haha… I just don’t think CC can compare to that intellectual classroom experience – last year, frankly, was the best year in my life so far.
I’ve honestly been avoiding thinking about it and about the fact that we’re a quarter of the way through college because I’m anxious that I’ve already reached the apex of my intellectual life, and that now it’ll be back to depression and boredom and loneliness and anonymity. I wish we could just read // all the books // instead of facing the realities of adult life and actually trying to live a good life, because after last year I’m not sure I could measure up even remotely to the standards of great books. Most especially intellectual intimacy – I’ve been feeling crazy lonely recently away from school – and Woolf and my roommate over the summer (but don’t tell him) set an impossible bar for living the good life in that regard because we’re only in this moment for four years – and what is there after that? I’m honestly terrified of not living a good life after the Core.
Sorry for the rant. I think I actually needed to formulate my thoughts, so thank you for giving me the opportunity. What specifically is on your mind?
"The man that I named the Giver passed along to the boy knowledge, history, memories, color, pain, laughter, love, and truth. Every time you place a book in the hands of a child, you do the same thing. It is very risky. But each time a child opens a book, he pushes open the gate that separates him from Elsewhere. It gives him choices. It gives him freedom. Those are magnificent, wonderfully unsafe things."
joss whedon put on his fifth cowboy hat inside of the tourist shop of Ol’ West Adventures Theme Park And Carnival somewhere in the state of new mexico. he scratched his chin and nodded solemnly to himself, turning to look at a ceramic figurine of a horse playing guitar.
"so," he whispered to himself. "this is china”
"what a fascinating culture"
"Let me be clear: Unarmed college hopefuls don’t deserve to be shot. Unarmed kids heading to work or trade school don’t deserve to be shot. Unarmed kids floundering aimlessly through life don’t deserve to be shot. Unarmed kids who have been in trouble—even those who have been nothing but trouble—don’t deserve to be shot.
The act of pinning the tragedy of a dead black teen to his potential future success, to his respectability, to his “good”-ness, is done with all the best intentions. But if you read between the lines, aren’t we really saying that had he not been on his way to college, there’d be less to mourn?
That’s dead wrong."
I keep thinking in the third person as if I’m in a Woolf novel:
"He found a temporary understanding with the world – there was, despite it all, something that glided under experience, a sense of constancy, of unchanging, objective, true beauty if one looked hard enough, that yielded too easily to that caged, selfish imagination of his and the vagaries of an equally constant boredom with an unchanging life."
"It is strange, he thought, that directly he should be so unhappy, so eager for a thrust from and to home, and have such a nostalgia and desire for the near future, he should insist on occupying this moment in time alone, in absorbing every drop of the senses."
What’s funny is that Look Homeward, Angel is written like this too.
" He wondered if life did repeat itself, if it did surrender to the dissection of historians and actuaries. He knew instantly that all that had ever been created or destroyed or felt or loved or hated had been done, and that his life would be a horrible parody of, a poor homage to, the real thing, perhaps even one that never existed."
Maybe I shall start recording important thought processes in this way. This is very useful.
"People who have monsters recognize each other. They know each other without even saying a word."