Another week – another quote I found from the absolutely amazing illustrated book Women in Science by Rachel Ignotofsky!
This is one quote that’s hard to live by, but the person behind it really did.
Rita Levi-Montalcini was a nobel prize winning jewish nevrobiologist, who became 103 years old. She won the nobel prize for research in nerve growth and understanding of the development of the nervous system, by studying embryos. There were a lot of odds against her, being italian under Mousselini, jewish and surviving two world wars, not to mention being a woman. She was a feminist very adamantly straying from the expected path of marriage and family, choosing to go to university and becoming a pioneer in science and medicine. To which she says she was never lonely or had regrets about.
She had to withdraw from university in Italy as anti-semitism grew, established a laboratory in her bedroom and when bombs fell she would bring her research to the safety of the basement. When she and her family had to go in hiding during the Holocaust, she got some eggs and continued studying the nerve tissues of the embryo, which eventually led to her prize winning theories. The stories of this woman and those like her never cease to amaze me in their persistence. And how little I know of them before I look, which “women in science” gives a great starting point of.
This week’s quote is in honor of the sun disappearing for the next five months. Guess where I live? Westcoast of Norway, in a valley where I cannot believe people still live in the winter months as the mountains are too tall for the few sunbeams there are in the winter to reach us. (I love this place, promise.) My grandmother, who was Sami from the nothern part of the country – where there’s no sun for half the year, and always sun for the other half – would complain about it constantly and that makes me smile.
One branch of my family has lived in this place for generations. They were smarter than us though – they settled on the other side of the freaking fjord (water), on a mountain farm with few neighbours where they had to use boat to get anywhere, but guess what they had? SUN.
Also I liked this retelling of norse mythology by Neil Gaiman, even if it was a lot of things I knew already, here’s my review.
Here’s the quote of the week –
There’s this story that won’t leave me. It started more than a year ago and I started writing it down, like a first draft, but at one point it just stops, with no conclusion. WHat kind of story is that, it’s like having a part of a song stuck in your head, but not being able to listen to the rest – because it doesn’t exist. Some of you are surely gearing up for NaNoWriMo where everyone writes like crazy in November, and I’ve never participated. Wouldn’t call myself much of a writer either. I just want the end of this thing to come to me, I’ve sat down so many times and tried to just get it out. Nothing. There’s like a jump from this girl escaping this town, getting into some bad shit and then escaping that again for starting a new life. Like we’re talking “the goldfinch” kind of shift in tone and genre like midways in the story, because there’s no “end” to the first part. I have so many thoughts on why I have a mental block about the end. But I didn’t make this main character anything like me. I just can’t get to the bottom of it.
Also there’s another problem in that I cannot write. I feel very much like I did writing my first newspaper article, like googling what an article was and what the small text under a picture was called. If you have good resources for becoming a better writer, throw them at me pls
Here’s this week’s quote –
This book “Kafka on the shore” (full review here) is really quotable, on top of just being amazing magical realism and so surreal and beautifully written. It truly both made me understand and more confused at the same time about what magical realism can be. This quote in particular really rings true to me. Most likely whatever you need won’t turn out the way you imagined, whatever you’re searching for won’t fit the expectation you built for it. Don’t limit yourself in your search and you might find it sooner. At least I hope so.
It’s time for the quote of the week, where I ramble about things.
I like this quote, even though it might not be correct in all cases always. It’s something to consider deeply though. Along the same lines of do not judge others harshly if you make the same mistake. Without going into what is true, I think it’s important to admit your own faults, fears and good sides. Or you’ll always project insecurities onto others, without truly realizing.
A friend had some drama today. I do not know the complete truth about myself, but I do know more than the people who enlarge other’s flaws to look better themselves. People, just don’t be assholes, even if you don’t match personality-wise with someone. If you leave out psychopaths, there’s few people who are good or bad, like black and white. Sometimes I just truly hoped empathy would be more encouraged, instead of having one’s own ego and pride at the center.
It’s time for the quote of the week, which I’ll keep short and simple this week. I also haven’t read any books this week because I said to myself I wouldn’t before getting schoolwork done and then I became sick again. Fun.
It’s time for the quote of the week. I want to read more poetry again, especially since I’m planning of having a calm and productive weekend. Unlike the last one, where I was dancing until 4am and had a lot of fun, but also can notice how it wears down my chronically ill body afterwards. This weekend is comprised of tea and baking and studying and hopefully poetry. And I won’t feel bad about any of it, that’s the plan at least. So. Over to the quote, and how I weirdly relate to it.
It’s from one of Anne Sexton’s letters to Stanley Kunitz. I’ve been struggling physically and mentally this week. I should be better, I expect to be better. People have told me I’m tough often this past two weeks, past two months even. I needed it to be said before, I’m somehow past that point now. What I need is someone to tell me I don’t need to be tough anymore, and for it to be true. “You’re tough, you’ve made it this far”. Yes, but I won’t be able to keep it up. The thing about surviving is that you do it until you don’t, and then it’s too late. So instead of going deep into that, comparing myself to a cooked broccoli is what I am going to do at least once next week. That’s a goal if I’ve ever heard one. Hope your week was great and if you have any thoughts on this let me know.
This week has been great. There might’ve been a lot of tiny anxious moments mixed in, but I feel like I was productive and acomplished things, mostly to not be so unorganized. Things are starting to come together and I’m in that rare place of mind that I accept that my life will have ups and downs, but time will pass nonetheless. Not a lot of books were read though.
We’re continuing the last week’s theme of nature, with a quote from a painter, Camille Pissarro. Obviously that was said by a painter, I thought when I first read it, since it does have a certain feel of feeling better than others. Still, it made me think and appreciate people like that in my life. Must we all take a breath and see beautiful things in humble places.
It’s time of the quote of the week, the post with me rambling and trying to figure out my life. That wasn’t it… Where I present a quote?
Sometimes quotes sounds inspirational, and then you hopefully realize how wrong or destructive they can be. This one was either said or highlighted in a book by a guy who went into the wild, survived for a long time, before dying of starvation. Well most likely, it’s debetable (it could be disease, it could be other theories- read the book). Even knowing that, this quote still hangs on to me. Christopher Johnson McCandless was a young person, seemingly with a lot of ideas and conflicts inside him. I don’t understand people who read this book and can’t imagine what would make a well-off recently graduated college guy try to escape materialism and the average workday and a life that so many people feel bound to their whole adult life. Hell, I consider running off into the wild regularly. Sometimes more seriously than others. Christopher took a too big of a risk in the end, but his determination and the dicipline he must’ve had to pull his journey off should be able to be admired. He seems like someone who was human, who had problems with something in the society he was a part of and decided to test himself, to go on an adventure.
It’s time for the quote of the week, the post where I ramble and try to balance out the negative of the past week. This week is the last of summer vacation, it’s been both a very good summer and a very bad one (as I spent too much of it in the hospital). I am anxious for the new school year, so here’s trees.
I have not read the book this quote is from, but it’s still true for me. Nature is always a comforter for me, a way to unwind and breath. There’s psychology studies going around on how the ocean makes people feel calmer, with the open landscape it brings. I wouldn’t trust it, but I’ve found it true for myself. I mean – how can you really study things like that, especially narrowing down the reason? Guess we’ll find out as my politics class was cancelled this semester and seems like I’ll have to take psychology, shit. But this was about trees, I’ve never lived without them. (Or oceans for that matter.) If I look up right now I would see trees, which is a lucky and unfortunate side effect of living in a valley. A while back I listened to the episode Dendrology (TREES) of the podcast Ologies, which is the best science podcast you’ll find as every scientist interviewed are so passionate about their field, and learned so much.
Good luck to everyone returning to school!