Friday, October 11, 2013

30 Quotes from Haruki Murakami

As you can probably tell from several previous posts, I'm a fan of Japanese author Haruki Murakami, and Alexander Martin of the Wall Street Journal recently wrote a blog entry about how Murakami was favored to win the prize.  As a fan of Murakami's work, I hoped he would win, but sadly (or not so sadly if you're a fan of Munro) Alice Munro was announced as the winner on Thursday.

He may not have won this year, but in honor of Murakami and his work, here are 30 pieces of wisdom from Murakami's books as posted on shortlist.com

  • Death is not the opposite of life, but an innate part of life.”  - Norwegian Wood
  • When you come out of a storm, you won't be the same person who walked in. That's what the storm is about.”  - Kafka on the Shore
  • Whiskey, like a beautiful woman, demands appreciation. You gaze first, then it's time to drink.”  - Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World
  • If you can love someone with your whole heart, even one person, then there's salvation in life. Even if you can't get together with that person.” - 1Q84
  • Mediocrity's like a spot on a shirt—it never comes off.” - Dance Dance Dance
  • Even castles in the sky can do with a fresh coat of paint.” - South of the Border, West of the Sun
  • Remove everything pointless from an imperfect life and it’d lose even its imperfection.” - Sputnik Sweetheart
  • A friend to kill time is a friend sublime.” - A Wild Sheep Chase
  • If you really want to know something, you have to be willing to pay the price.” - After Dark
  • A person's destiny is something you look back at afterwards, not something to be known in advance.” - The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle
  • When it's all over, it'll seem like a dream.” - Pinball
  • If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.” - Norwegian Wood
  • Love can rebuild the world, they say, so everything's possible when it comes to love.” - Kafka on the Shore
  • It takes years to build up, it takes moments to destroy.” - Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World
  • Nobody's easier to fool, than the person who is convinced that he is right.” - 1Q84
  • Possibilities are like cancer. The more [you] think about them, the more they multiply, and there's no way to stop them.” - Dance Dance Dance
  • No one could say how long that life would last. Whatever has form can disappear in an instant.” - South of the Border, West of the Sun
  • Judging the mistakes of strangers is an easy thing to do - and it feels pretty good.” - Sputnik Sweetheart
  • To get irritated is to lose our way in life.” - A Wild Sheep Chase
  • In this world, there are things you can only do alone, and things you can only do with somebody else. It's important to combine the two in just the right amount.” - After Dark
  • Spend your money on the things money can buy. Spend your time on the things money can't buy.” - The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle
  • Don't feel sorry for yourself. Only assholes do that.” - Norwegian Wood
  • Each person feels pain in his own way, each has his own scars.” - Kafka on the Shore
  • Life's no piece of cake, mind you, but the recipe's [your] own to fool with.” - Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World
  • Life is so uncertain: you never know what could happen. One way to deal with that is to keep your pajamas washed.” - 1Q84
  • People die all the time. Life is a lot more fragile than we think. So you should treat others in a way that leaves no regrets. Fairly, and if possible, sincerely. It's too easy not to make the effort, then weep and wring your hands after the person dies.” - Dance Dance Dance
  • Understanding is but the sum of misunderstandings.” - Sputnik Sweetheart
  • Generally, people who are good at writing letters have no need to write letters. They've got plenty of life to lead inside their own context.” - A Wild Sheep Chase
  • “'For a while' is a phrase whose length can't be measured. At least by the person who's waiting.” - South of the Border, West of the Sun
  • Enough with these stupid metaphors. They don't do any good.” - Pinball