“All I ever did to that apartment was hang fifty yards of yellow theatrical silk across the bedroom windows, because I had some idea that the gold light would make me feel better, but I did not bother to weight the curtains correctly and all that summer the long panels of transparent golden silk would blow out the windows and get tangled and drenched in afternoon thunderstorms. That was the year, my twenty-eight, when I was discovering that not all of the promises would be kept, that some things are in fact irrevocable and that it had counted after all, every evasion and every procrastination, every word, all of it.”
— Joan Didion, “Goodbye to All That”
1:43 pm • 28 July 2014
“We tell ourselves stories in order to live. The princess is caged in the consulate. The man with the candy will lead the children into the sea. The naked woman on the ledge outside the window on the sixteenth floor is a victim of accident, or the naked woman is an exhibitionist, and it would be ‘interesting’ to know which. We tell ourselves that it makes some difference whether the naked woman is about to commit a mortal sin or is about to register a political protest or is about to be, the Aristophanic view, snatched back to the human condition by the fireman in priest’s clothing just visible in the window behind her, the one smiling at the telephoto lens. We look for the sermon in the suicide, for the social or moral lesson in the murder of five. We interpret what we see, select the most workable of the multiple choices. We live entirely… by the imposition of a narrative line upon disparate images, by the ‘ideas’ with which we have learned to freeze the shifting phantasmagoria — which is our actual experience.”
— Joan Didion, The White Album
1:12 pm • 19 July 2014 • 3 notes
I leave the number and a short
message on every green Volvo
Is anything wrong?
I miss you.
The phone rings constantly.
One says, Are you bald?
Another, How tall are you in
your stocking feet?
Most just reply, Nothing’s wrong.
I miss you, too.
— The Ubiquity Of The Need For Love, Ronald Koertge (via writingthatilike)
(Source: sarahroberts-blog, via writingthatilike)
8:45 am • 13 July 2014 • 12,860 notes
“This is what I think when the lover asks why I am
so quiet. My body shaped like a C at the foot of his bed.”
— from a poem by Regina DiPerna (via bostonreview)
7:55 pm • 9 July 2014 • 10 notes
Anonymous said: what freshman seminar programs would you recommend, if you've taken any? :)
I had a reasonably good experience with my freshman seminar, though I wouldn’t go into your freshman seminar expecting a life changing experience. It is definitely the “fourth course” of enrollees and demands the least work, so in general, a freshman seminar is not as rewarding as those grueling but educational classes.
I still (tentatively) recommend taking one, since freshman fall was hard and exhausting and I can’t imagine how hosed I would have been had I taken four real courses.
If you’re going to take one, just pick a topic you’re interested in (not necessarily something you want to concentrate in, just anything that you wish you knew more about), confirm that the Q scores are high enough, and apply! There are hundreds of seminars, so I have no clue which ones are objectively fantastic, but I feel like everyone’s experience is pretty consistent regardless of the specific topic.
5:06 pm • 1 July 2014
Anonymous said: Do you have any advice to someone just graduated who isn't doing anything this summer? Everyone I know is interning at some tech start up or other and I feel a little bit useless right now..
Hi! It depends completely on what you’re interested in doing and what you feel will be a valuable (or instructive) experience to you. There are so many ways for this to be the case - so please don’t worry about tech startup internships.
In order of importance, it would probably be great to 1) relax, enjoy your summer, spend time with friends and family before you leave for college 2) work on a favorite hobby of your choice, be it comic book illustration or tap dance or whatever 3) read a lot: fiction, essays, memoirs, or really almost anything but those explain-the-world, behavioral economics books 4) tinker around in whatever area you’re thinking of studying in college. This is easiest if you’re a coder at heart, because that would just entail coding, but in general, summer is a good opportunity to leaf through textbooks or academic journals to get a head start on cool topics in your field.
Anyway, that’s what I wish I did more of the summer after my senior year!
4:59 pm • 1 July 2014
Everybody else basic, Liberty live her life on an everyday basis
Liberty Leading the People (1830), Eugène Delacroix / Poetic Justice, Kendrick Lamar feat. Drake
6:47 pm • 30 June 2014 • 1,964 notes
Anonymous said: what are you doing this summer?
I’m interning at a think tank/software dev shop/research group amalgam run out of HLS/the CS department. Really enjoying it thus far.
5:43 pm • 21 June 2014
Jill Lepore: What the Theory of “Disruptive Innovation” Gets Wrong
If you saw the episode of the HBO sitcom “Silicon Valley” in which the characters attend a conference called TechCrunch Disrupt 2014 (which is a real thing), and a guy from the stage, a Paul Rudd look-alike, shouts, “Let me hear it, disss-ruppttt!,” you have heard the voice of Clay Christensen, echoing across the valley.
Jill Lepore, “The Disruption Machine”
1:46 pm • 17 June 2014 • 1 note
Translator’s Confession, 3 a.m.
Dear C, I dropped
your sentence in hot water.
I talked to the boil. I said Here
is my thumb for you to burn.
Here is the soft heart
of my hand and my arm and
the nape of my wreck.
I said vapor, just take me.
I’m done burning
with these pages. Being invisible
doesn’t mean a person
won’t blister, doesn’t mean
the blisters won’t fill
with pockets of water
or when lanced the rawest flesh
won’t emerge. First the word
then the murky leak
begins—what another mind
may scrape against
but never skin.
— Idra Novey (via commovente)
11:31 pm • 8 June 2014 • 424 notes