Right now I’m reading Haruki Murakami’s Dance Dance Dance and it’s really blowing my mind. The writing is absolutely beautiful — props to Alfred Birnbaum, the translator.
I’m about half way into it. To oversimplify the plot so far, it’s about an early-thirties reporter living an unfulfilled life, who gets called back to a mysterious hotel where he can unlock a room in his mind (potentially the underworld?) and talk to a guy in a sheep suit about the connections in his life and why they’re there.
Choice quotes that are resonating with me, a thirty something reporter staring down the barrel of approaching middle-age:
You live by yourself for a stretch of time and you get to staring at different objects. Sometimes you talk to yourself. You take meals in crowded joints. You develop an intimate relationship with your used Subaru. You slowly but surely become a has-been…
Things were a lot simpler in 1969. All you had to do to express yourself was throw rocks at riot police. But with today’s sophistication, who’s in a position to throw rocks? Who’s going to brave what tear gas? C’mon, that’s the way it is. Everything is rigged, tied into that massive capital web, and beyond this web there’s another web. Nobody’s going anywhere. You throw a rock and it’ll come right back at you…
“The cards were laid out in front of me, I could have picked any one. I could’ve done all right whatever I chose. Not a doubt in my mind. All the more reason not to make a choice.”
“I never even got to see the cards,” I said in all honesty. Which elicited a laugh from Gotanda. He probably thought I was joking.