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334 pages, Hardcover
First published July 1, 2006
"Si te encuentras con que debes elegir entre una cosa que tiene forma y otra que no la tiene, elige siempre la que no la tiene."
–Viajero por azar
"El viento, por ejemplo, tiene su voluntad. Nosotros vivimos sin darnos cuenta de ello. Pero, a veces, nos vemos obligados a advertirlo."
–La piedra con forma de riñón que se desplaza día tras día
«Una persona, llegue hasta donde llegue, jamás puede dejar de ser ella misma»
–La chica del cumpleaños
«El hombre únicamente se teme a sí mismo».
«Mientras el mundo continúe siendo el mundo, yo lograré salir de ésta. Sin duda»
–El folclore de nuestra generación: prehistoria del estadio avanzado del capitalismo
"El corazón de las personas es como un pozo muy profundo. Nadie sabe lo que hay en el fondo. Sólo podemos imaginárnoslo mirando la forma de las cosas que, de vez en cuando, suben a la superficie."
–Avión… o cómo hablaba él a solas
como si recitara un poema
To put in the simplest possible terms, I find writing novels a challenge, writing short stories a joy. If writing novels is like planting a forest, then writing short stories is more like planting a garden. The two processes complement each other, creating a complete landscape that I treasure. The green foliage of the trees casts a pleasant shade over the earth, and the wind rustles the leaves, which are sometimes dyed a brilliant gold. Meanwhile, in the garden, buds appear on flowers, and colorful petals attract bees and butterflies, reminding us of the subtle transition from one season to the next.
1. Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman - An anonymous guy went to the hospital with his cousin who had this ear defect after a baseball ball hit him. Then a flashback came when the guy waited for him. It was summer and the guy and his friend went to visit his friend's girlfriend and bought some chocolates. When they met his friend's girlfriend she talks about this weird tree that surrounded by flies and ones the flies entered your ear they will eat your body and died sleeping and it ended with a big question mark. I liked the story but I can't get the whole point or the connection of his past and the present, and his connection to his cousin.
2. Birthday Girl - No matter what you wish for, people will never be anything but themselves. It was the waitress' 20th birthday and her leave was canceled after her co-worker got sick. The manager always have this meal delivered to the owner every night and nobody knows who's the owner, fortunately she had this chance to meet the owner after the manager got a stomach ache. When she came to the old man's room she's been asked about her birthday gift and nobody knows what was it.
3. The Mirror - A man greatest enemy is himself. A man working in a university and he worked every night and roam around the school every 9 PM and 3 AM. One night when he's trying to roam around the building he saw a mirror, and he saw his reflection. I forgot the exact scene but there is something wrong to his reflection because of his compulsive attack he broke the mirror. When he came back again he saw nothing but a flashlight and a kendo sword he left the night he saw his reflection.
4. A Folklore for My Generation: A Pre-History of Late-Stage Capitalism - There are stories that are funny but we can't laugh but we learned from them. When Mr. Anonymous was in his high school years, he was the perfect guy of his class, he's good at sport, smart and good-looking. He had this girlfriend in the other class same with him, they usually classified by other students as perfect couple. But every time they make out they have rules to be followed, they need to wear there shirt while having sex, and hands only. In the end the girl broke up with the guy, she believes that a girl should marry a year older while a guy should marry less younger. But the girl promised to have sex with the guy when she got married because deep inside she still loves her. Beliefs and norms.
5. Man-Eating Cats - this is part Sputnik Sweetheart part Man-Eating Cats. There is a hole in the Sputnik Sweetheart, what really happened to Sumire after she was lost like a smoke? Like the main character in the story, Sumire heard a very good music and she went to the top of the mountain were Miu and Sumire jogged every morning. She contemplated until she asked herself who she really is...the story ends like that if we base it in the short story. So question answered.
6. The Seventh Man - This short story contradict the The Mirror, man's greatest enemy is not himself but when you turn your back on it. A massive typhoon came to another Mr. Anonymous' town when he was young, he had this friend named K. Anonymous and K went to the seashore and play like they always do everyday and Anonymous, K and his dog was eaten by the massive wave. Another massive wave attack him but everything stopped he saw K smiling inside the wave and when he wake up, K's body was lost. After that accident he always have this nightmare and went to Tokyo to study and work. When his father died his brother sell there house and he gave him a small box full of drawings of K. When he came back he realized that he need to face any trouble that surpass his life.
7. The Ice Man - This is the story of a normal Japanese girl and an Ice Man, God, I can't imagine they're having sex and she felt like an icicle is pushing inside her vagina. Her family is against her will to marry the ice man, so her family disowned her and marry the Ice Man. After several months and years of there relationship she decided to go to the South Pole and live until she realized that her husband become foreign to her eyes. So she felt disappointed and went back to Japan with her baby on her womb.
8. Firefly - This is a story of search love and letting go, like a firefly inside a jar.
9. Chance Traveler - A gay man always visit a cafe every Tuesday and she met this woman who also reads the same book, accidentally. Until this woman fall in love to the man and he confronted the woman. He lost track of the days and he decided to call his sister. He lost connection with his sister when he tried to speak of his gender to his family and he was withdrawn lost from the connection between them. His sister got an operation for Breast Cancer and it was successful and he was accepted by his sister and his sister's husband.
10. Hanalei Bay - A mother lost her child from a shark while surfing in Hawaii after that tragic event she decided to go back to Hawaii annually to celebrate her son's death. Until she met this two Japanese guy who can't speak English and she helped them. The two Japanese surfer saw a single legged surfer in the beach and told the creepy story to the mother.
11. The Kidney-Shaped Stone That Moves Everyday - A short story writer who fall in love to a circus woman, or something like that. She works as a performer to tall buildings, balancing like Libra. Although she made it as a secret to the narrator soon the writer fall in love to her. There is no impossible if you are determined to achieve your goal.
12. A Shinagawa Monkey - A woman lost her name after a monkey stole her name tag. After that event she asked a guidance councelor or a psychologist bout her problem in life. Like she felt nothing about her husband or she have doubt with the love she received from her parents. Until this odd monkey told her the truth and gave her back her name tag. After the odd event, she realized that she should accept things even they are bad or good.