Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Aimless Reading: The M's, Part 63.1 (Haruki Murakami)

Murakami, Karuki
What I Talk About When I Talk About Running

I think this was sent to me by the publisher.

I haven't read it, but I did glean from its cover that Haruki Murakami likes to run. I used this information two years ago to formulate an invite that would have included his running a marathon in Toronto before or after coming to Buffalo to give a lecture. He declined, for the third straight year. This coincided with the departure from Random House of my contact who had an in with his agent.

Thus, I haven't invited him back. I would really like to read this book, but I have decided now to wait and see if Mr. Murakami accepts my offer to read all of his published works in celebration of his impending visit to Buffalo. The ball is in your court, my friend.

from What I Talk About When I Talk About Running

I'm on Kauai, in Hawaii, today, Friday, August 5, 2005. It's unbelievably clear and sunny, not a cloud in the sky. As if the concept clouds doesn't even exist. I came here at the end of July and, as always, we rented a condo. During the mornings, when it's cool, I sit at my desk, writing all sorts of things. Like now: I'm writing this, a piece on running that I can pretty much compose as I wish. It's summer, so naturally it's hot. Hawaii's been called the island of eternal summer, but since it's in the Northern Hemisphere there are, arguably, four seasons of a sort. Summer is somewhat hotter than winter. I spend a lot of time in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and compared to Cambridge-so muggy and hot with all its bricks and concrete it's like a form of torture-summer in Hawaii is a veritable paradise. No need for an air conditioner here-just leave the window open, and a refreshing breeze blows in. People in Cambridge are always surprised when they hear I'm spending August in Hawaii. "Why would you want to spend summer in a hot place like that?" they invariably ask. But they don't know what it's like. How the constant trade winds from the northeast make summers cool. How happy life is here, where we can enjoy lounging around, reading a book in the shade of trees, or, if the notion strikes us, go down, just as we are, for a dip in the inlet.

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