Wild projections and expectations

I think nobody enjoys solitude […] but I’m not looking to make friends. I’m not eager to find disappointment.

by Haruki Murakami, “Norwegian Wood”

New people usually pave the way for wild projections and unrealistic expectations.

Most people perceive hope as a built-in feature, like a wild animal that cannot be tamed. Sometimes, the only way we can move forward is by wildly assuming that people are decent, brave and own above the average intellectual capabilities.

All we can do is hope; hope that some day we’ll be able to surround ourselves with people who share the same values, who smile at the same jokes or who are passionate about the same things, who are driven by the same engines as we are.

The path to achieving this goal is undoubtedly rough and paved with a string of disappointments. Accepting disappointment as something natural is particularly difficult, but not impossible. We just have to learn to tame our wild projections and adjust our human urge to believe.

Maybe pessimism and solitude are two great ways to cope with constant disappointments.

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If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.

(Haruki Murakami, “Norwegian Wood”)

The context of this quote is a casual talk between two friends, who differentiate themselves from all other people in their campus by being the only ones who read “The Great Gatsby” by Scott Fitzgerald.

It got me thinking at the power books have over our lives, in the sense that our culture is somehow the unconscious decision maker. No doubt, the books we read are changing our self perception, the way we perceive others and the social environment.

Ultimately, books are tailoring our present and future.

You are what you read

Jazz & the Murakami ritual

I loved jazz before I met Murakami, but after indulging myself with a couple of his novels, I cannot conceive reading without hearing some jazz music in the background.

It grew on me, like a strange but comforting ritual.

Now, off to enjoying jazzradio, while getting to chapter 3 – Norwegian Wood.

Haruki Murakami novels

To begin with, just a list of Haruki Murakami’s novels I’ve read until now, in the exact order, even if I should have read the trilogies, as they were chronologically written.

  1. South of the Border, West of the Sun
  2. Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World,
  3. A Wild Sheep Chase,
  4. Kafka on the Shore,
  5. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle
  6. Sputnik Sweetheart.

The point is that by the end of 2011, I would have a list of reviews for all the novels I’ve read and some bits and pieces of my thoughts and notes on the books.

Currently reading: Norwegian Wood.

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