Passage from Chance Traveler (Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman)

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– Haruki Murakami, from the story “Chance Traveler” in book Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman

I’ve been binging on everything Haruki Murakami that I could find these past few months; I’ve consumed about 5 of them in this time, and I can’t get enough. I think that Murakami is one of the best writers of our time. He paints the most vivid pictures with his words – no easy feat, since he originally wrote all this in Japanese. Actually, in this case I must give credit to everybody that translates his work into English; it is mind-boggling for me to try to accept that these lucidly-conjured words were adapted from a completely different tongue.

Anyway, this quote and the passage around it, from his short story, Chance Traveler, which I read within a book with several short stories within, Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman, really struck a chord with me.

Coffee, My Addiction: A Declaration of Love Via Quotes from Others

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Coffee is my addiction. I wake up and crave it immediately. I need it to get through the mid-afternoon slump. Mostly, it’s the caffeine that I need. I require it to such an extent that I get something close to a migraine if I don’t have it within the first hour after I wake up. Without it, I can not for the life of me focus on anything; when trying to look a person in the eye, I start seeing double and I get dizzy. I feel very lazy and very bored. I tend to get irrationally upset and irritated at the smallest things. I know that there are many medical implications stemming from the abuse of caffeine, but if you go through withdrawals like I do, you’ll likewise realize something that I realized: Drinking it rather than not is the lesser of these two evils. At least for me. Coffee is the best way for me to consume my drug, although tea and the occasional energy drink can make the cut sometimes. I am a smoker at this time, but I know in my heart that it would be easier to quit nicotine than to completely relinquish my daily brew.

I’ve seen many funny, famous, and friggin’ foolish quotes about coffee and caffeine, and here are a few of my favorites:

-No one can understand the truth until he drinks of coffee’s frothy goodness. ~Sheik Abd-al-Kadir

-A morning without coffee is like sleep. ~Anonymous

-……..if it weren’t for the coffee, I’d have no identifiable personality whatsoever. ~David Letterman

-Sleep is a symptom of caffeine deprivation. ~Anonymous

-This coffee falls into your stomach, and straightway there is a general commotion. Ideas begin to move like the battalions of the Grand Army of the battlefield, and the battle takes place. Things remembered arrive at full gallop, ensuing to the wind. The light cavalry of comparisons deliver a magnificent deploying charge, the artillery of logic hurry up with their train and ammunition, the shafts of with start up like sharpshooters. Similes arise, the paper is covered with ink; for the struggle commences and is concluded with torrents of black water, just as a battle with powder. ~Honore de Balzac, “The Pleasures and Pains of Coffee”

-I don’t have a problem with caffeine. I have a problem without caffeine! ~Anonymous

-The coffee is prepared in such a way that it makes those who drink it witty: at least there is not a single soul who, on quitting the house, does not believe himself four times wittier that when he entered it. ~ Charles de Secondat Montesquieu