“At 40. I was addicted. Not to success. I was addicted to trying my hardest. That’s the reward in itself. It’s what life’s about. The struggle. It’s the only way you can be proud. You can’t be proud of luck.”—Ricky Gervais: Show Biz (via huffingtonpost)
Cowbird is a small community of storytellers, working to build a public library of human experience. We’re collecting memories and stories from people all over the world, so that the knowledge and wisdom we accumulate as individuals can live on as part of the commons.
hi! i just wanted to leave a note telling you how inspiring your choice is to move to shanghai for me. Your blog just reminded me of my choice to move half way across the country for university last year and how much I have loved the experience.
Hopefully, someday I'll travel half way across the world for work and to see just how much the world has to offer me. Good luck at work and EXPLORE!
all the best!
Abby (from Canada)
Thanks for the kind words Abby! Sometimes a move, at this point in our life, is the most important decision we could make. For me, it has been, at least.
“What is an experience? Something that breaks a polite routine and for a brief period allows us to witness things with the heightened sensitivity afforded to us by novelty, danger, or beauty - and it’s on the basis of shared experiences that intimacy is given an opportunity to grow. Friendships nourished solely by occasional dinners will never have the depth of those forged on a trek or at a university. Two people who are surprised by a lion in a jungle clearing will – unless one of them is eaten – be effectively bonded by what they have seen.”—
“This is a generation of kids that have learned to communicate, search and purchase on very small devices, like mobile phones,’’ said James McQuivey, Forrester Research media analyst. “This year is a guinea pig year, next year the move will be en masse.’’ The trends are already striking. Forrester Research projects that 15.5 million e-readers will be sold this year, a 50 percent increase over last year. While the firm does not break out sales by age, children are a growing customer base. When Barnes & Noble launched a digital library for children last October, it had 120 picture book titles; today it has 570, including classics such as Curious George and Corduroy. Similarly, publisher HarperCollins reports that young adult e-books have surged 125 percent year over year.”—Oh, the pages that glow! - Boston.com (via infoneer-pulse)
“Some people turn sad awfully young. No special reason, it seems, but they seem almost to be born that way. They bruise easier, tire faster, cry quicker, remember longer and, as I say, get sadder younger than anyone else in the world. I know, for I’m one of them.”—Ray Bradbury (via thechocolatebrigade)
Date a girl who reads. Date a girl who spends her money on books instead of clothes. She has problems with closet space because she has too many books. Date a girl who has a list of books she wants to read, who has had a library card since she was twelve.
Find a girl who reads. You’ll know that she does because she will always have an unread book in her bag. She’s the one lovingly looking over the shelves in the bookstore, the one who quietly cries out when she finds the book she wants. You see the weird chick sniffing the pages of an old book in a second hand book shop? That’s the reader. They can never resist smelling the pages, especially when they are yellow.
She’s the girl reading while waiting in that coffee shop down the street. If you take a peek at her mug, the non-dairy creamer is floating on top because she’s kind of engrossed already. Lost in a world of the author’s making. Sit down. She might give you a glare, as most girls who read do not like to be interrupted. Ask her if she likes the book.
Buy her another cup of coffee.
Let her know what you really think of Murakami. See if she got through the first chapter of Fellowship. Understand that if she says she understood James Joyce’s Ulysses she’s just saying that to sound intelligent. Ask her if she loves Alice or she would like to be Alice.
It’s easy to date a girl who reads. Give her books for her birthday, for Christmas, and for anniversaries. Give her the gift of words, in poetry, in song. Give her Neruda, Pound, Sexton, Cummings. Let her know that you understand that words are love. Understand that she knows the difference between books and reality but by God, she’s going to try to make her life a little like her favorite book. It will never be your fault if she does.
She has to give it a shot somehow. Lie to her. If she understands syntax, she will understand your need to lie. Behind words are other things: motivation, value, nuance, dialogue. It will not be the end of the world.
Fail her. Because a girl who reads knows that failure always leads up to the climax. Because girls who understand that all things will come to end. That you can always write a sequel. That you can begin again and again and still be the hero. That life is meant to have a villain or two.
Why be frightened of everything that you are not? Girls who read understand that people, like characters, develop. Except in the Twilight series.
If you find a girl who reads, keep her close. When you find her up at 2 AM clutching a book to her chest and weeping, make her a cup of tea and hold her. You may lose her for a couple of hours but she will always come back to you. She’ll talk as if the characters in the book are real, because for a while, they always are.
You will propose on a hot air balloon. Or during a rock concert. Or very casually next time she’s sick. Over Skype.
You will smile so hard you will wonder why your heart hasn’t burst and bled out all over your chest yet. You will write the story of your lives, have kids with strange names and even stranger tastes. She will introduce your children to the Cat in the Hat and Aslan, maybe in the same day. You will walk the winters of your old age together and she will recite Keats under her breath while you shake the snow off your boots. Date a girl who reads because you deserve it. You deserve a girl who can give you the most colorful life imaginable. If you can only give her monotony, and stale hours and half-baked proposals, then you’re better off alone. If you want the world and the worlds beyond it, date a girl who reads.