How to live safely in a fictional universe

The mystery man

Do you remember where you were on your twentieth birthday? I don’t, but the woman in this story does. On her twentieth birthday she was working as a waitress. And when the manager got sick, she was asked to bring the owner his meal, like the manager did every day.

A girl on her twentieth birthday, a mysterious man in a hotel room, waiting for his meal, something bad has to happen, right? I’m still not sure if that was the case, but I did enjoy this story.

Birthday girl by Haruki Murakami

There’s Garden State in Japan too

Guy quits his job, dumps his girlfriend, loses his grandmother and returns to the town he hasn’t been in since he left his youth behind. So far, nothing’s new. But when you encounter the sleeping woman, hollowed out by pollen-covered flies and surrounded by blind willows, you know you’re reading Murakami.

Blind willow, sleeping woman by Haruki Murakami

Silas Marner and the wonderful world of public transportation

Another great place to read books: on the bus. The colleague I usually drive to work with is on holiday so I’m taking the bus the next few weeks. Taking the bus adds a half hour to my commute, but I make up for that by reading all the way to work. I can’t do that when I’m driving with someone.

This week I read Silas Marner by George Eliot which, despite being a slow starter, is pretty good and interesting.

Suddenly the world turned sideways

Call me oldfashioned, but I’m not a fan of ebooks. Not all new things are bad though: I love these lightweight flipback books. They’re a bit different and easy to hold with one hand, even when they’re 700 pages long. And even though the paper’s extremely thin, the book’s still made of paper!

I’m reading The angel maker by Stefan Brijs. A pretty good novel about a doctor who goes just a little too far when he’s trying to surpass God.

A day in the park with Burroughs and Kerouac

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I sometimes like to take my books to the park. This time I took And the hippos were boiled in their tanks, by William S. Burroughs and Jack Kerouac, with me. It’s not that good, until someone is killed and it ends.

I had a chat with a homeless person – at least that’s what I assumed he was, judging from the state of his hair, teeth and clothes – and looked at the pigeons and flowers.