debe ser tan divertido como que te pille el tren

People soon get tired of things that aren’t boring, but not of what is boring. Go figure. For me, I might have the leisure to be bored, but not to grow tired of something. Most people can’t distinguish between the two.

I’m watching a tennis match as I’m writing this. I like tennis, love the sport, and I don’t grow tired of it —but you can bet it’s boring, every game the same routine, from start to finish, one set, then another, then even another. Or reading a good book, especially non-fiction (you could say fiction too): utterly boring. Listen to opera (or to a conceptual album, as the ones that aren’t recorded any more): the same. Traveling, programming, having sex: you can add your favorite activities here, and you’ll see they all are boring.

What all them have in common is that you go on enjoying them all the same, regardless of them being boring. Murakami seems to imply that it’s because they are boring that you go on enjoying them, and I think he may be right. What would distinguish boring from tedious would be, then, that the tedious things are boring and unexciting, making you feel numb, teaching you nothing, wasting your time, carrying you nowhere. On the other hand, there would be the frivolous distractions, the glossy novelties, the adrenaline-charged activities that either you leave behind as you grow tired of them (as Murakami says) or become so intimately boring after a while that you end up loving them in their sheer boredom.

(quotation from Kafka on the Shore, by Haruki Murakami)

stand by me, or don’t

Fa sis mesos, la casa de davant d’on jo faig feina era un guirigall —els dos fills amb els amics que entraven, sortien i escupien enterra; el pare que treia el Mercedes per traginar la filla aquí i allà; la mare que amb el Nissan anava i venia; els amics flamencs del pare que s’hi ajuntaven per tocar la guitarra i fer un poc de música dos cops per setmana.

Avui, ni fills, ni filla, ni dona ni amics; el Mercedes a penes es fa servir; hi ha silenci i contenció. El pare ha quedat tot sol. Si això és sort o dissort, només ell ho pot saber.

armed buddhists

I once was in a restaurant in Berlin and a smiling Buddha in a slightly unbecoming pose kind of presided over the place. I remember telling my friends how I’d pick Buddhism over any other religion if I were to become religious just because of that —because it was highly improbable anyone bothered themselves and others about the Buddha being this way or that way.

This proves me wrong:

Anti-Muslim mobs rampaged through three more towns in Myanmar’s predominantly Buddhist heartland over the weekend, destroying mosques and burning dozens of homes.

significant, others?

Good luck trying to elicit a minimum respect from the people around you, especially those most beloved to you.

For a mother, she and her son are one and forever. Call it the unifying force in Nature —you won’t understand males’ handicaps and strengths if you don’t take it into full consideration.

It’s a nice thought, that of the world vanishing whenever you go to sleep at night, and making itself again, always slightly differently, when you wake up.

documentación por favor

Així que arrib al carreró d’accés d’allà on faig feina i em trob barrat el pas per una tanca i un policia nacional. Desconnect els bluetooth, desmunt de la bicicleta, m’hi adreç i em demana que a on vaig. A la feina dic jo (i tu què n’has de fer, que pens). Que on és que faig feina. Idò un carrer més avall. D’acord, passi, me diu; i també que duc auriculars i vaig en bicicleta; que si no sé que hi ha una ordenança municipal que ho prohibeix. Li dic que sí, que ho sé, i que gràcies per recordar-m’ho (que tens vocació de policia local, tu?). Insisteix a dir-me que si no veig que anar amb auriculars me posa en gran perill, perquè m’aïlla completament del món; pens que home, ja m’agradaria, però li dic, home, tot depèn de a quin volum duguis la música. Això l’empipa, i em repeteix que hi ha una ordenança municipal. Li dic que ja m’ho ha dit i que crec recordar que fins i tot li he agraït que m’ho recordàs. Quan veig que està a punt de demanar-me la documentació, call i me’n vaig.