Because of the dog's joyfulness, our own is increased. It is no small gift. It is not the least reason why we should honor as love the dog of our own life, and the dog down the street, and all the dogs not yet born.
In this new book, I open with a Hebrew quotation nobody is able to understand. This is in order to say, O.K., do you want to play this game? You are my friend, and we go. Otherwise, too bad for me or for you. I think it is untrue that my books are impenetrable. On the contrary, I think I am a sort of great vulgarizer. I put down certain difficult stuff, but I give my readers clues to understand what this kind of stuff is.
No matter what we have come through, or how many perils we have safely passed, or how many imperfect and jagged - in some places perhaps irreparably - our life has been, we cannot in our heart of hearts imagine how it could have been different. As we look back on it, it slips in behind us in orderly array, and, with all its mistakes, acquires a sort of eternal fitness, and even, at times, of poetic glamour.
I've watched a lot of mid-career people, and Yogi Berra says you can observe a lot just by watching. I've concluded that most people enjoy learning and growing. And many are dearly troubled by the self-assessments of mid-career. Such self-assessments are no great problem at your age. You're young and moving up. The drama of your own rise is enough. But when you reach middle age, when your energies aren't what they used to be, then you'll begin to wonder what it all added up to; you'll begin to look for the figure in the carpet of your life. I have some simple advice for you when you begin that process. Don't be too hard on yourself. Look ahead. Someone said that Life is the art of drawing without an eraser. And above all don't imagine that the story is over. Life has a lot of chapters.
More than anything, I felt the unfairness of it, the inarguable injustice of loving someonewho might have loved you back but can't due to deadness, and then I leaned forward, my forehead against the back of Takumi's headrest, and Icried, whimpering, and I didn't even feel sadness so much as pain.
Don't let them tell us stories. Don't let them say of the man sentenced to death He is going to pay his debt to society, but: They are going to cut off his head. It looks like nothing. But it does make a little difference. And then there are people who prefer to look their fate in the eye.