A couple of days ago, I said goodbye to one of my ESL students. He was rather smart, hardworking, patient and very open to learning new things. He was asked to share an anecdote for one of his university classes. Now, I told him one of my very special memories with my dad: the day I learned what exactly Corned Beef is made of.
On that day, I asked my dad a question while we were having lunch together,well, eating corned beef.
Me: Pa, if pork and beans has pork and beans in it, why doesn’t Corned Beef have any corn?!
I know, my dad who has a low tolerance for senseless things, had to answer his crazy 8-year-old daughter’s inquiry.
He firmly, and almost impatiently, said , “Pork and beans,noun and noun,cornED (with emphasis on the D sound) means salted.”
There was no way I could voice out any more objections with that explanation.
On other news, I bought 4 packs of improperly labeled Basil leaves. As I was going to wash it last night, the familiar smell of basil wafted the moment I ripped open the package. Now, I am not fan of pesto on pasta, and I have 4 packs of these Spinach slash Basil lying on the fridge. Thank you for improperly labeling them ***** grocery store!!! My mom will kill me. Hmmm….maybe garlic and pesto bread..
Happy Birthday, Italo Calvino, born 15 October 1923, died 19 September 1985
It is not the voice that commands the story; it is the ear.
It’s better not to know authors personally, because the real person never corresponds to the image you form of him from reading his books.
A quarter of America is a dramatic, tense, violent country, exploding with contradictions, full of brutal, physiological vitality, and that is the America that I have really loved and love. But a good half of it is a country of boredom, emptiness, monotony, brainless production, and brainless consumption, and this is the American inferno.
A classic is a book that has never finished saying what it has to say.
One writes fables in periods of oppression.
The struggle of literature is in fact a struggle to escape from the confines of language; it stretches out from the utmost limits of what can be said; what stirs literature is the call and attraction of what is not in the dictionary.
The ultimate meaning to which all stories refer has two faces: the continuity of life, the inevitability of death.
I have spent more time with other people’s books than with my own. I do not regret it.
Who are we, who is each one of us, if not a combination of experiences, information, books we have read, things imagined? Each life is an encyclopaedia, a library, an inventory of objects, a series of styles, and everything can be constantly shuffled and reordered in every way conceivable.
The writer is someone who tears himself to pieces in order to liberate his neighbor.
You reach a moment in life when, among the people you have known, the dead outnumber the living. And the mind refuses to accept more faces, more expressions: on every new face you encounter, it prints the old forms, for each one it finds the most suitable mask.
The novels that attract me most… are those that create an illusion of transparency around a knot of human relationships as obscure, cruel and perverse as possible.
Calvino was an Italian short story writer and novelist. His best known works include the Our Ancestors trilogy, and the novels Invisible Cities and If on a winter’s night a traveller.
Until you’re about the age of twenty, you read everything, and you like it simply because you are reading it. Then between twenty and thirty you pick what you want, and you read the best, you read all the great works. After that you sit and wait for them to be written. But you know, the least known, the least famous writers, they are the better ones.
The aching heart will someday depart with the hopes of ever being loved back
It cannot relive what ought to be dead
Nor should it still keep it alive
Such is the way of the world
Love, unrequited, untold
You were there, in the midst of winter I plucked up my courage to approach you You were beautiful, yet cruel. To you, eternal love doesn’t exist You pushed me away coldly
You are dazzlingly beautiful Even though I knew it was impossible Even if by a small miracle, I knew that it wouldn’t be possible that you’d come looking for me With cold words, You froze my heart I beg of you, please take my spiritless hand
I’ve thought of you countless times in the last four years, although in episodes, as if by fits of convulsions, triggered by a sudden stillness of being, or by some melancholic memory resurfacing. Time and again, the thoughts kept coming back , staying as long as they liked and leaving as abruptly as they came, but never really saying goodbye. There were always diversions, but their presence didn’t leave an imprint in my soul like you did.
Every time I stumbled upon a song that I fancied, I always found the lyrics to be reminiscent of you,even when I haven’t translated them yet.
I do not love you.
Or maybe I do, I’m not really sure.
You just keep popping in my head at the most random times.