ten years

What I was reading in the fall of 2011

p281: The woman he had loved most (he was thirty at the time) would tell him (he was nearly in despair when he heard it) that she held on to life by a thread. Yes, she did want to live, life gave her great joy, but she also knew that her “I want to live” was spun from the threads of a spiderweb. It takes so little, so infinitely little, for someone to find himself on the other side of the border, where everything–love, convictions, faith, history–no longer has meaning. The whole mystery of human life resides in the fact that it is spent in the immediate proximity of, and even in direct contact with, that border, that it is separated from it not by kilometers but by barely a millimeter.

What I wrote in the fall of 2009

TIFF’s description of Once Upon a Proletarian: “As the director’s scarcely concealed sadness, anger and disenchantment seep through beautifully composed frames, we glimpse the revolutionary greatness and heroism of the past, especially as compared to today’s reality. It’s almost impossible to imagine what the future holds for the disoriented children of China’s liberal economy.”

Which is simply hilarious. I cannot begin to imagine being born thirty years earlier, in my mother’s childhood, when rights and wrongs seemed so absolute. Disorientation makes it possible to discover the unexpected. Which is true of the children of China’s semi-liberal economy, as well as China’s economy itself.

What I wrote in the fall of 2007

Saturday, six soothing miles in semi-rain. When I run, I just feeeel that I’m doing the right thing. I can see myself running the Chicago marathon next year, the New York marathon the year after, and so on and so forth.

At work, it’s a different story. At times, I feel that I’m doing things right. First twelve-month period, focused on technical skills. Second twelve-month period, focused on communications skills. Third twelve-month period, focusing on project management skills. But I never feel that I’m doing the right thing.

What I wrote in the fall of 2005

Apparently, my white blood cells are doing crazy things.

At first, when I visited my primary physician, I was told the condition is triggered by stress. Then, the specialist that I am seeing suggested that I eat more red meat. Go ahead, he said, get as stressed as you want.

I find the possibility of my suffering from a stress related disorder disconcerting because stress does not bother me. I would not recognize myself if I were not in the fight and flight (or in my case, fight and fight) mode.

Despite being rather behind in my studying, I feel quite relaxed … lingering in bookstores on the way home … reading Sylvia Plath … staring at random pretty girls in grocery stores; it startles me when they smile back.

What I wrote in the fall of 2003

too busy

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