by destroying the rich.
You cannot strengthen the weak
by weakening the strong.
You cannot bring about prosperity
by discouraging thrift.
You cannot lift the wage earner up
by pulling the wage payer down.
You cannot further the brotherhood of man
by inciting class hatred.
You cannot build character and courage
by taking away people’s initiative and independence.
You cannot help people permanently
by doing for them,
what they could and
should do for themselves.” —Abraham Lincoln
Find a girl who reads. You’ll know that she does because she will always have an unread book in her bag.She’s the one lovingly looking over the shelves in the bookstore, the one who quietly cries out when she finds the book she wants. You see the weird chick sniffing the pages of an old book in a second hand book shop? That’s the reader. They can never resist smelling the pages, especially when they are yellow.
She’s the girl reading while waiting in that coffee shop down the street. If you take a peek at her mug, the non-dairy creamer is floating on top because she’s kind of engrossed already. Lost in a world of the author’s making. Sit down. She might give you a glare, as most girls who read do not like to be interrupted. Ask her if she likes the book.
Buy her another cup of coffee.
Let her know what you really think of Murakami. See if she got through the first chapter of Fellowship. Understand that if she says she understood James Joyce’s Ulysses she’s just saying that to sound intelligent. Ask her if she loves Alice or she would like to be Alice.
It’s easy to date a girl who reads. Give her books for her birthday, for Christmas and for anniversaries. Give her the gift of words, in poetry, in song. Give her Neruda, Pound, Sexton, Cummings. Let her know that you understand that words are love. Understand that she knows the difference between books and reality but by god, she’s going to try to make her life a little like her favorite book. It will never be your fault if she does.
She has to give it a shot somehow.
Lie to her. If she understands syntax, she will understand your need to lie. Behind words are other things: motivation, value, nuance, dialogue. It will not be the end of the world.
Fail her. Because a girl who reads knows that failure always leads up to the climax. Because girls who understand that all things will come to end. That you can always write a sequel. That you can begin again and again and still be the hero. That life is meant to have a villain or two.
Why be frightened of everything that you are not? Girls who read understand that people, like characters, develop. Except in the Twilightseries.
If you find a girl who reads, keep her close. When you find her up at 2 AM clutching a book to her chest and weeping, make her a cup of tea and hold her. You may lose her for a couple of hours but she will always come back to you. She’ll talk as if the characters in the book are real, because for a while, they always are.
You will propose on a hot air balloon. Or during a rock concert. Or very casually next time she’s sick. Over Skype.
You will smile so hard you will wonder why your heart hasn’t burst and bled out all over your chest yet. You will write the story of your lives, have kids with strange names and even stranger tastes. She will introduce your children to the Cat in the Hat and Aslan, maybe in the same day. You will walk the winters of your old age together and she will recite Keats under her breath while you shake the snow off your boots.
Date a girl who reads because you deserve it. You deserve a girl who can give you the most colorful life imaginable. If you can only give her monotony, and stale hours and half-baked proposals, then you’re better off alone. If you want the world and the worlds beyond it, date a girl who reads.
Or better yet, date a girl who writes.” —Rosemary Urquico
I want to see you game boys… I want to see you brave and manly… and I also want to see you gentle and tender. Be practical as well as generous in your ideals… keep your eyes on the stars and keep your feet on the ground. Courage, hard work, self mastery and intelligent effort are all essential to a successful life. Character in the long run is the decisive factor in the life of an individual and of nations alike.” —Theodore Roosevelt
Warning: this entry jumps around from point to point every other sentence. also, this entry is meant for explanatory and enlightenment purposes. just go with it, I hope it helps.
It’s really curious how much you can think in one day about the smallest little details. Everything from a little pine cone that falls off a tree into your open backpack or the sound of the wind when everything is quiet. Or even a thought that has been reoccurring in your mind: why am I thinking this, what does it matter, how will it help others? Moreover, these little things are overpassed, unsaid, and unnoticed day after day after day. Then you start taking advantage of the little simple things in life and find yourself crumbling into a hole of disaster. A little over-exaggerated, I know. But when you feel like life is spinning into different circles and cloning the disasters in it until you can’t take it anymore, you panic and things have to be forced to get into perspective again.. if you want to be at peace again. It is an eternal struggle, but it can be done. Anyways, after that huge ramble, I’m trying to get to the fact that taking time to reflect and notice these little things is vital for any human being, being we are so small and weak in reality. Here is an example.
I experienced all of this today and during the past couple of weeks, actually. I really have felt like life has been spinning in different circles around me, almost like it was playing “ring around the rosie” around me in a taunting, hypocritical tone and action. I felt like everything was going wrong in my life: I felt completely alone in this big school and world, I was not enjoying anything I would do or participate in during my days, my studies then suffered and my prayer life decreased dramatically. I felt like a little pebble, literally, who had no idea what to do with life and everyone included in it. It’s kind of like the feeling where you look into the future and feel like everything needs to be explained at that exact moment to be true and real. However, reality won’t let that happen, we can’t always be in control of what we do, what we want to do, and who we love.
Anyways, I couldn’t take it anymore and started freaking out on everyone I loved: my boyfriend, my family, my best friends and people I contact daily. Where was the Brittney smile? Where was that friendly Brittney gesture? Where was the peace inside of me that daily kept decreasing little by little. I found every little thing pissed me off and I blamed everything and everyone around me, without looking into myself: things my boyfriend did, things my father did, things work did.. I found an excuse for it all. Shameful, shameful vice. That was it, I was done with life playing this taunting game of vice, deceit, and hate. I do not want to be hated, I do not want to be insecure, and I do not want to feel alone. I mean, who does?
After class I headed straight for the chapel. It was the least I could do since I feel like I haven’t visited Jesus in a long while in prayer or conversation. I took him out of my heart and I wanted him back. Sitting in the quiet quiet chapel I started crying little by little. How could I ditch something so important in my life, someone who loves me so much and would do anything to give me the peace and joy I sought for over these past two weeks? The hate I felt suddenly lifted off my heart with each prayer, each
“I love you”, each cry out to Him. I prayed for discernment, for patience (something I most lack), for decrease of pride, for peace between me and those I have hurt these past couple of weeks.
Interestingly, I also caught a glimpse of the red light above “Jesus’ home.” This was a simple little gesture, one that I kept going back to my entire time in the chapel. That flame was so enticing, I could not stop looking at it and analyzing it. The thought of that flame kept me thinking the rest of the time I prayed: the flame of vice, the flame of suffering, the flame of cleansing, the flame of newness, the flame of gold, the flame in our hearts. This time those words and that flame meant something to me. How could I be so ignorant of the love in my life? How could I be so ignorant of the flame burning inside of me day in and day out? I need to “let my little light shine” and not let it burn out by evil. I can’t let it burn out.. it would destroy me, my relationships, and most importantly, my relationship with my best friend. I will not let the flame of vice burn out my relationships with loved ones. How could I let it, especially with faith on my side? Impossible, absolutely impossible.
The simple, little flame needs to burn on and increase with each passing day.
I sat in the chapel for an hour.