Friday, October 2, 2015

My Own Paper Towns

I just read Paper Towns in this my unproductive days. Well, at least I have something to do. And here is some paragraphs from the book that I remember and I'd like to share.


“Listen, kid. This is what happens: somebody—girl usually— got a free spirit, doesn’t get on too good with her parents. These kids, they’re like tied-down helium balloons. They strain against the string and strain against it, and then something happens, and that string gets cut, and they just float away. And maybe you never see the balloon again. It lands in Canada or somethin’, gets work at a restaurant, and before the balloon even notices, it’s been pouring coffee in that same diner to the same sad bastards for thirty years. Or maybe three or four years from now, or three or four days from now, the prevailing winds take the balloon back home, because it needs money, or it sobered up, or it misses its kid brother. But listen, kid, that string gets cut all the time.”
“Yeah, bu—” 
“I’m not finished, kid. The thing about these balloons is that there are so goddamned many of them. The sky is choked full of them, rubbing up against one another as they float to here or from there, and every one of those damned balloons ends up on my desk one way or another, and after a while a man can get discouraged. Everywhere the balloons, and each of them with a mother or a father, or God forbid both, and after a while, you can’t even see ’em individually. You look up at all the balloons in the sky and you can see all of the balloons, but you cannot see any one balloon.” He paused then, and inhaled sharply, as if he was realizing something. “But then every now and again you talk to some big-eyed kid with too much hair for his head and you want to lie to him because he seems like a good kid. And you
feel bad for this kid, because the only thing worse than the skyful of balloons you see is what he sees: a clear blue day interrupted by just the one balloon. But once that string gets cut, kid, you can’t uncut it. Do you get what I’m saying?”
I nodded, although I wasn’t sure I did understand. He stood up. “I do think she’ll be back soon, kid. If that helps.”
I liked the image of Margo as a balloon, but I figured that in his urge for the poetic, the detective had seen more worry in me than the pang I’d actually felt. I knew she’d be back. She’d deflate and float back to Jefferson Park. She always had."


And finally. Margo as a balloon ended at the Paper Towns.
Then maybe. Someday. I'll be a balloon that float. I don't know where I'll float away. Maybe it's somewhere, or maybe someone, or maybe something. Nobody knows. Even myself.

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