My poor K month. It has fallen victim to the laziness of summer and my unbearable heat-induced malaise. Not motivated to explore the world around me, I’ve turned to simple pursuits and the never disappointing pleasure of books and movies.
2 points for Michael KNIGHT’s The Typist, which follows a brief time span in the life of a typist who is attached to General MacArthur’s headquarters. The short novel vividly portrays the culture in post-World War II occupied Japan, but it is the main character whose narration makes this book so compelling. By the nature of the job, a typist documents the words and events of others, like a spectator who watches but is not involved. In this book, the typist, Van, is like that as well. We sense that he is just letting everything unfold around him, with little personal involvement, until he finally is called upon to act on his own emotions and perceptions. Ultimately, he lives his own life, combats loneliness and emerges as a far more resilient man than before. The Typist is a simple yet rewarding story that shares history and a short journey with someone worth knowing.
Another 2 points for the documentary KORAN by Heart. Saw this on HBO and was fascinated by the children who totally memorize the Koran, sometimes without even speaking or reading Arabic. I love immersing myself into another culture. Although I learned things I did not know about the Muslim world, my biggest lesson: we’re basically all alike no matter where we live and what we believe. This is a lesson that always needs refreshing from time to time.