300 short stories:: story 190

story: “Birthday Girl”

author: Haruki Murakami

year: 2006

where: at the campus cafeteria (started on Tuesday, paused, finished on Wednesday)

note: intense déjà vécu

a line: “When the owner’s meal was ready at eight o’clock, she pushed the room service cart into the elevator and rode up to the sixth floor.”

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300 short stories:: story 189

story: “Man-eating Cats”

author: Haruki Murakami

year: 2006

where: in palestra

note: a reread, a favorite, a fantasy!

a line: “The wind was the wind at the edge of the world. An inescapable retro color filled the place. It made me feel as if I were being quietly swallowed up by an alien reality, something foreign and just out of reach, vague yet strangely gentle. And the shadow of that substance colored the faces, the eyes, the skin of the people gathered in the harbor.”

300 short stories:: story 188

story: “The Year of Spaghetti”

author: Haruki Murakami

year: 2006 (originally 2005 in The New Yorker)

where: home, bed

note: Murakami just loves to weave in a mention of spaghetti in his long and short fiction; and this story (and his year of cooking and eating alone) makes me feel so content with my love of solitude.

a line: “Can you imagine how astonished the Italians would be if they knew that what they were exporting in 1971 was really loneliness?”

300 short stories:: story 186

story: “Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman”

author: Haruki Murakami

year: 2006

where: midday and golden

note: I love Murakami’s introduction to this collection. He writes, “My short stories are like soft shadows I’ve set out in the world, faint footprints I’ve left behind.”

a line: “My cousin lived nearby, but I was just over a decade older than him and we had never been what you’d call close.”