DPS 周刊 147 - 作家眼中的其他作家是什么样的?

DPS 周刊 147 - 作家眼中的其他作家是什么样的?
Photo by Milin John / Unsplash


这是我一直好奇的问题,恰好 Paul Theroux 分别遇见了村上春树和博尔赫斯,并且在 Ghost Train to the Eastern StarThe Old Patagonia Express 两本书中花了大量篇幅记述这两段经历,让我们可以一窥 Paul 眼中的村上春树和博尔赫斯。

Paul 是在东京遇见村上春树的,彼时后者刚刚出版了 Andaguraundo,一本讲述1995年东京地铁沙林毒气事件的书。Paul 刚刚搭乘火车到东京,正想探索东京地铁,于是村上春树成为了他最好的向导,这也让 Paul 得以近距离观察村上春树:

A healthy writer is an oxymoron. Yet Murakami has run twenty-nine marathons and competed in numerous triathlons. One long day he ran a 100-kilometer race. This took him eleven and a half hours.

其实两人最初的见面是在美国,没猜错的话,应该是在波士顿。因为 Paul 是波士顿人,而村上春树曾在哈佛的 Reischauer Institute 做访问学者。

He did not advertise this feat, nor did he go on book tours in Japan. He was so averse to publicity that he had never appeared on Japanese TV or in bookstores, gave no lectures, did no signings, hardly surfaced in Japan at all—though he had taught in the United States, at Harvard and Princeton, and sometimes promoted his books there. But he did not wish his face to be recognizable in Japan.
Another un-Japanese aspect of Murakami's career is that he has chosen to live a large proportion of his adult life outside Japan, in Greece and Italy and the United States (where I first met him).


He returns to Japan at intervals to spend time at his house in Oisu, where one of his recreations is playing American jazz records from his collection of six thousand, all vinyl.

Paul 对于村上春树的评价非常高,不仅隐居于世,而且活力惊人。每天四点起床写作,十点结束所有工作。剩下的时间拿来跑步,或者任何他想干的事。每天日出而作,日落而息,这也是放弃爵士酒吧,全职写作之后的最大自由。

I got in touch with Murakami. He is the most reclusive writer I know, also the most energetic, and with a lively mind. You would almost take him to be normal. He rises every day at four A.M. ("it used to be five") to begin his day's stint and writes until midmorning; he spends the rest of the day doing whatever he likes, usually running. After ten in the morning he'll shrug and say, "I've done my day's work."


His father was a professor of Japanese literature. Haruki did not read Japanese literature. Instead, he read Truman Capote and Chekhov and Dostoyevsky, while listening to Thelonious Monk.
Murakami said he chose it because such mom-and-pop places were disappearing, being forced out of business by the larger, mostly American coffee shop chains. And the coffee was better here too.
"I was a rebel at Waseda, yes. American soldiers were here on R and R from Vietnam. We held demonstrations. We occupied the university." "Are there demonstrations now against the Iraq War?" "None." "Because the government discourages them?" "No. Student apathy, probably."


"But you wanted to be a writer." "No. I had nothing in my mind." He stared at me over the top of his coffee cup. "I was married. I just wanted to listen to music."

Paul 遇见博尔赫斯是在布宜诺斯艾利斯,有意思的是,这一章也是将地铁的,和遇见村上春树的那一章一样。Paul 在这一章的一开头就从地铁展开,介绍博尔赫斯的家就在 Retiro-Constitución 线的 Plaza General San Martin 站:

The Buenos Aires Subterranean is an efficient five-line network of subway trains. The same size as Boston’s subway, it was built five years later, in 1913 (making it older than Chicago’s or Moscow’s), and, as in Boston, it quickly put the tram cars out of business. The apartment of Jorge Luis Borges was on Maipú, around the corner from Plaza General San Martin Station, on the Retiro-Constitución line.”

能遇见博尔赫斯也是因为 Paul 早已名声在外。他在阿根廷遇见他的西语译者,后者鼓励他和博尔赫斯见面。而这一切发生得那么突然,那么随性:

The question is not whether I want to meet Borges, but whether Borges wants to meet me.
Late the next afternoon, my phone rang. “Borges wants to see you.” “Wonderful,” I said. “When?” “In fifteen minutes.”


Don’t worry. Gradual blindness is not a tragedy. It’s like a slow summer dusk.
“I don’t have this complex,” he said. “I don’t hate the Spanish. Although I much prefer the English. After I lost my sight in 1955 I decided to do something altogether new. So I learned Anglo-Saxon. Listen . . .”

其实博尔赫斯有着英格兰血统,就像 Paul 自己有着意大利血统一样。

I am partly English. My grandmother came from Northumberland, and there are other relatives from Staffordshire.
In 1901, my great-grandfather had left his village of Agazzano, near Piacenza in northern Italy, and had gone to New York with his wife and four children.

尽管年事已大,博尔赫斯依旧经历惊人。而 Paul 也很享受和他相处的时光,成了半个博尔赫斯的自传作者。就这样,Paul 一再延长在布宜诺斯艾利斯的旅行,每天一起床就记录前一晚和博尔赫斯的谈话,然后出门溜达,直到夜幕降临搭乘地铁去见博尔赫斯:

The restaurant was full this Good Friday night, and it was extremely noisy. But as soon as Borges entered, tapping his cane, feeling his way through the tables he obviously knew well, a hush fell upon the diners.
Borges was tireless. He urged me to visit him again and again. He stayed up late, eager to talk, eager to be read to; and he was good company. By degrees, he turned me into Boswell. Each morning when I woke I sat down and wrote the conversations that had taken place the night before; then I walked around the city, and at nightfall I boarded the Subterranean.
I had canceled several train reservations in order to spend more time with Borges, but now I stopped procrastinating and made firm plans to head south.

不少人提醒 Paul,博尔赫斯的脾气很大,但在 Paul 眼中,后者像天使一般:

I had been warned that he could be severe or bad tempered. But what I saw was close to angelic.


“Revenge does not alter what was done to you. Neither does forgiveness. Revenge and forgiveness are irrelevant.” “What can you do?” “Forget,” said Borges. “That is all you can do. When something bad is done to me, I pretend that it happened a long time ago, to someone else.”


Herbert Lui 指出有一定的压力也是一种理想状态:

  1. 创作过程是一种探索,这意味着你不确定最终作品会是什么样子,只有在完成后才能知道;
  2. 我们之所以觉得自己像是一个冒充者,是因为我们正在探索,并且不确定结果如何。直到找到结果,这种想法才会消失;
  3. 当你在这种合适的压力下坚持努力,你一定会变得更好。
Daily Productive Sharing 966 - The Sweet Pressure
One helpful tip per day:) Herbert Lui notes that a certain amount of stress is also an ideal state: 1. The creative process is a form of exploration, which means you don’t know what the final work will look like until it is completed; 2. The reason we feel like

如何保持快乐?Scott Young 分享了他的七条建议,其中一些让我深有启发:

  1. 接受我们生活中的大部分都难以改变,但是追求改变我们可以改变的;
  2. 所谓快乐的其实是最大化我们现阶段生活中存在的机会;
  3. 虽然我们一直在追求快乐,但其实真正的快乐可能是追求本身;
  4. 快乐往往不经意间出现在我们的生活中,如果我们不加注意,就可能忽略这些;
  5. 我们所能选择的当然有限,但是这些局限中,我们总能找到一些空间去改变。
Daily Productive Sharing 967 - Rules for Happiness
One helpful tip per day:) Scott Young shared his seven suggestions on how to maintain happiness, some of which deeply inspired me: 1. Accept that most aspects of our lives are difficult to change, but strive to change what we can. 2. Happiness is about maximizing the opportunities present in

如何面对生活中的挑战?David Perell 分享了他的18歌思维框架:

  1. 当你困在太具体的情形下,可以把视角放宽;当你困在太宽泛的情形下,可以把视角聚焦;
  2. 大多是选择都是可逆的;
  3. Keith Rabois 投资法则:找那些高度分散而且用户体验很差的行业,然后想办法垂直整合一个方案,用来简化这些步骤;
  4. 人们总想着做简单又吸引人的事,所以这样的行业竞争会很激烈。试着反着来做,这样竞争少,回报高。
Daily Productive Sharing 968 - David Perell’s Frameworks
One helpful tip per day:) How to face challenges in life? David Perell shared his 18 thinking frameworks: 1. When you’re stuck in a very specific scenario, you can broaden your perspective; when you’re stuck in a too broad scenario, you can focus your perspective. 2. Most choices are reversible.

为什么要独自行走?Craig Mod 给出了自己的答案:

  1. 行走于她而言就是一场对话,独自行走是他与自己的对话;
  2. 独自行走的要义就是直面陌生,直面途中的陌生;
  3. 真正的行走在于重复走已经走过的路,这样你才能更好地体会其中的乐趣。
Daily Productive Sharing 969 - Solo Walks
One helpful tip per day:) Why walk alone? Craig Mod provided his own answers: 1. For him, walking is a conversation, and walking alone is a conversation with himself. 2. The essence of walking alone is to confront the unfamiliar, to face the strangeness along the way. 3. True walking

Nick Maggiulli 指出了一个在积累财富中常见的现象 -- 永远得不到满足:

  1. 我们总是幻想着未来,希望在外来得到更多,从而忽略了当下;
  2. 这样一来,我们一直在追寻未来,却永远够不着未来;
  3. 当我们够到了原先定义的未来,又开始追寻下一个未来,如此往复;
  4. 我们难以避免这样的做法,但是我们可以减少一些这样的举动;
  5. 最好的做法就是满足过去,珍惜当下,并且停止规划未来。
Daily Productive Sharing 970 - The Never-Ending Then
One helpful tip per day:) Nick Maggiulli pointed out a common phenomenon in wealth accumulation -- never being satisfied: 1. We always fantasize about the future, hoping to gain more from external sources, thereby neglecting the present. 2. As a result, we are constantly chasing the future, but we can