Dire Diphthongs

Another book blog. But this time, I won't be so quick to discontinue it.


"Then I fail to follow your Majesty. If this young person should produce her letters for blackmailing or other purposes, how is she to prove their authenticity?"
"There is the writing."
"Pooh, pooh! Forgery."
"My private note-paper."
"My own seal."
"My photograph."
"We were both in the photograph."
"Oh, dear! That is very bad! Your Majesty has indeed committed an indiscretion."

- Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (20)

"Yeah," Mari says. "But it’s possible for people to draw closer to each other even while they keep a reasonable distance between them."
“Of course it’s possible,” Takahashi says. “But what seems like reasonable distance to one person might feel too far to somebody else.”

- Haruki Murakami, After Dark (115)

Mari gave an uncomfortable little shrug. “My sister’s older than me and she is just amazing to look at. As long as I can remember they always compared me to her, like, ‘How can two sisters be so different?’ It’s true: I don’t stand a chance if you compare me to her. I’m little, my boobs are small, my hair’s kinky, my mouth is too big, and I’m nearsighted and astigmatic.”
Karou laughs. “People usually call stuff like that ‘individuality.’”
"Yeah, but it’s not easy to think that way if people have been telling you you’re ugly from the time you’re little."

-  Haruki Murakami, After Dark (53)

On her table is a coffee cup. And an ashtray. Next to the ashtray, a navy blue baseball cap with a Boston Red Sox “B.” It might be a little too large for her head. A brown leather shoulder bag rests on the seat next to her. It bulges as if its contents had been thrown in on the spur of the moment. She reaches out at regular intervals and brings the coffee cup to her mouth, but she doesn’t appear to be enjoying the flavor. She drinks because she has a cup of coffee in front of her: that is her role as a customer.

- Haruki Murakami,  After Dark (5)

Why do people have to be this lonely? What’s the point of it all? Millions of people in this world, all of them yearning, looking to others to satisfy them, yet isolating themselves. Why? Was the earth put here just to nourish human loneliness?
I turned faceup on the slab of stone, gazed at the sky, and though about all the man-made satellites spinning around the earth. The horizon was still etched in a faint glow, and stars began to blink on in the deep, wine-colored sky. I gazed among them for the light of a satellite, but it was still too bright out to spot one with the naked eye. The sprinkling of stars looked nailed to the spot, unmoving. I closed my eyes and listened carefully for the descendants of Sputnik, even now circling the earth, gravity their only tie to the planet. Lonely metal souls in the unimpeded darkness of space, they meet, pass each other, and part, never to meet again. No words passing between them. No promises to keep.

- Haruki Murakami, Sputnik Sweetheart (179) 

When we left the restaurant, the sky was a brilliant splash of colors. The kind of air that felt like if you breathed it in, your lungs would be dyed the same shade of blue.

- Haruki Murakami, Sputnik Sweetheart (94)

I had no idea what to say. A silence descended on us as sudden as the instant fresh oil is poured into a large frying pan. 

- Haruki Murakami, Sputnik Sweetheart (52)