sunnysunflowers made this amazing Murakami inspired postcard for me. I wasn’t expecting anything and found it in the mail yesterday, amusingly coinciding with Valentine’s Day. In case you don’t get the references, I am a huge fan of the character of The Rat and the books he appears in, sheep playing a prominent role in one (or two) of them, as well. The two moons symbolize 1Q84.
I’m going to get this framed and will hang it up with my May Kasahara painting.
A million thanks again, An!
There are tons of artworks related to Murakami’s books, but I have never seen a single artwork of my favorite character, The Rat.
Someone please visualize him already.
It’s only a bit after 1 am in Germany, but I suppose that’s legit. I just can’t wait any longer.
I believe I have mentioned my favorite song several times before, but I never really went deeper into detail. It’s about time then. My absolute, ultimate favorite song of all time is the ten minute long, epic closing song of the 1975 album Born to Run, Jungleland, by Bruce Springsteen and his heartstoppin’, fun lovin’, hard rockin’, pants droppin’, booty shakin’, love makin’, viagra takin’, earth quakin’, history makin’, legendary E Street Band. I don’t think there ever was a single song in my long history of .. being aware of music that influeced me so much, had such an impact on my life, has been played so many times, has led me through so many struggles, has been sung so often in the middle of the night. Never have I felt so connected, so tied to a piece of music.
It’s so powerful, has such an enormous meaning. It’s the ultimate definition of infinite bittersweetness and so haunting yet lovely that I wish it never ended and I could always stay in this special mood that I get whenever I listen to Jungleland. Everything about it is outstanding. The gentle violin/piano intro, the lyrics and vocals, the epic 3 minute saxophone solo by the Big Man, Clarence Clemons, the drums that accompany said solo, those wordless rock ‘n’ roll defining wails at the end of the song.
Jungleland is about The Rat and The Barefoot Girl, a young couple, and the rough backstreet life in New Jersey. I really don’t want to go deeper into the subject of lyrics and background information because I, to be honest, don’t feel like my English is rich enough in vocabulary to make a more detailed describtion worth reading. You can find the lyrics here. People who have been following me for a couple of months surely have noticed my passionate obsession for the character of The Rat.
The only thing left to add right now is, of course, the song itself. The problem about this matter is that tumblr only allows uploads up to 10mb, and that’s ridiculously little for a 10 minute song in a decent quality. I couldn’t find a studio version of the song on YouTube (probably because of copyright issues - I love you Germany), but maybe you guys can, in case you want to. For a first listen I highly recommend to try the studio version before listening to a live record.
Okay. To me, this is the best song ever written. Won’t be hard to guess what’s in the playlist right now.
Generally, people who are good at writing letters have no need to write letters.The Rat (Haruki Murakami - A Wild Sheep Chase)
Twenty-five years just to come to this, and for what? the Rat asked himself. Don’t know. Good question, but no answer. Good questions never have answers.Haruki Murakami - Pinball, 1973
I find Spanish rather uninteresting, too.
I’ve finished Hear The Wind Sing and will probably start Pinball, 1973 tonight. I liked the Rat’s part in HTWS though he really did not appear too often. He’s got something about him that really fascinates me nevertheless. Even though Murakami distances himself from his earlier works I got to say that especially those are the ones I like the most (not saying I read anything by him that would have been bad). There was a guy on the official homepage calling the Rat a James Dean-like antihero and even though I find those stereotypes a little stale and stupid I probably have to agree with that. A great character, and together with the other Rat from Jungleland an absolute favorite.
I will let you know what I think of Firmin when I’m through it. The Sugarplastics album you recommended me is great, by the way. Thanks!
Some months ago I became aware of the fact that I strongly sympathize with characters called “The Rat”, like the guy in Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Jungleland’, the “Magic Rat” whose “own dream guns him down” in the tunnels uptown, or the friend of the nameless main character in Haruki Murakami’s early novels, for example. I would even go so far as to say that “The Rat” makes up a really big part of my life as some kind of symbol and something I can really, I don’t know, relate to. Something that influenced me or is part of my very own personal history. I kind of want to immortalize this symbol and I think it might make a great tattoo if I give it some more deeper thoughts and add some customization/personalizations. I also considered changing my tumblr url but it’s taken by a guy who made only two posts over a year ago.
Kind of felt like dropping these thoughts somewhere.