vrijdag 26 mei 2017

nook people


I don't require much to feel far-removed; to impose my wanderings on what's close. Because of this, my friend and I have started calling ourselves nook people. Those of us who seek corners and bays in order to redeploy our hearts and not breakt he mood. Those of us who retreat in order to cubicle our flame. Who collect sea glass. Who value a deep pants pocket. Who are our own understudies and may as well have shadowboxes for brains.

.. Nook people express appreciation in the moment by maintaining how much we will miss what is presently happening. Our priorities are spectacularly disordered.

.. Nook people might be terrible at giving and receiving hugs despite often feeling—on the whole, at home and in public—as though we are holding on tight. Nook people sense slight tremors or the onset of a neck rash when faced with people at parties who yell-speak. A nook person catches sight of the quiet cranny at any gathering: the arm of a couch, a sill to perch on, the corner of a counter where the vegetable platter—only celery and ashy carrots are left—has been abandoned. (..); sits on the floor and braids carpet tassels only to become self-conscious and unbraid them. From afar, even nearby actually, a nook person can seem like a real bore. The last person whom you want to meet. A fun-killer.

.. Nook people need relief from distraction's overall insistence: the trap of everything else. Their ambition is not to be understood outright, but to return to an original peg. To share without betraying whatever mechanism individuates him or her. Perhaps that's what we call our disposition. How becoming is multipart, but mainly a pilgrimage inward. If you share too much of yourself, you risk growing into someone who has nothing unacknowledged. Those yet-to-access riches that I'd suspect are what tingle when a song's lyrics eject me into outer space; assure me I can love; can go about and be loved; can retreat and still get, as in both catch and understand, love. Those yet-to-access riches that I'd suspect too are what tingle when a building's architecture persuades me to notice other systems of proportion.

.. What a nook person wants is space, however small, to follow whatever image is driving her, instead of sensing like she might have to trade it in or share it before she's willing. Her awakening demands no stage but, rather room to store that second half of what she deems her double life: what's corrugated inside. Intuition's buildup.
     Nook people find it trying to imagine themselves in real-life situations but long to climb into, for instance, a movie still.

.. Nook people are interested in what's backstage; (..) [n]ook people can gently disagree while securing their spark. No. No. Spark is not substantive enough. Their approach. That radiant heat they typically keep stored inside because it functions as insulation.
     Nook people love signing with a heavy pen; don't mind waiting in the car; love sitting on a stack of banquet chairs in an empty banquet hall, feet dangling; appreciate the surprising density of a beaded curtain (..).

.. Nook people confuse emotional truth with other varieties of truth. They are a composite of the last person who complimented them and the next person who might ignore them, and also whomever or whatever they consider themselves a child of.

.. As adults, nook people cower under overhead lightning. They prefer when lamps yoke the floor rather than animate an entire room. They are habitual creatures who fear each time they're charmed by something, because what if it's the last time they are charmed by anything?


Durga Chew-Bose, Too Much and Not the Mood; ‘Heart Museum’.

dinsdag 23 mei 2017

if you were some tall guy

‘As we were heading down Mass Ave toward campus, a man stepped out of a doorway. “I’m selling books,” he said. Instinctively I averted my eyes, picked up my pace, and changed course slightly to give him a wider berth—just as Ivan did the opposite, slowing down right in front of the man, looking right at him, right into his eyes. “Books, really?”

I was overcome by the sudden sense of Ivan’s freedom. I realized for the first time that if you were a guy, if you were some tall guy who looked like Ivan, you could pretty much stop to look at anything you wanted, whenever you felt like it. And because I was walking with him now, just for this moment, I had special dispensation, I could look at whatever he was looking at, too.’

~ Elif Batuman, The Idiot

donderdag 18 mei 2017

everyone thought they were dumbo

“I found myself remembering the day in kindergarten when the teachers showed us Dumbo, and I realized for the first time that all the kids in the class, even the bullies, rooted for Dumbo, against Dumbo’s tormentors. Invariably they laughed and cheered, both when Dumbo succeeded and when bad things happened to his enemies. But they’re you, I thought to myself. How did they not know? They didn’t know. It was astounding, an astounding truth. Everyone thought they were Dumbo.

Again and again I saw the phenomenon repeated. The meanest girls, the ones who started secret clubs to ostracize the poorly dressed, delighted to see Cinderella triumph over her stepsisters. They rejoiced when the prince kissed her. Evidently, they not only saw themselves as noble and good, but also wanted to love and be loved. Maybe not by anyone and everyone, the way I wanted to be loved. But, for the right person, they were prepared to form a relation based on mutual kindness. This meant that the Disney portrayal of bullies wasn’t accurate, because the Disney bullies realized they were evil, prided themselves on it, and loved nobody.”

~ Elif Batuman, The Idiot