Episode 7! Guan talks about Rebecca Stead’s YA novel When you reach me, Bec talks about the movie Lion and Karen talks about Alain de Botton’s The Course of Love. Relationships, inspiration and the power of story: just a few of the things we cover this episode!
When You Reach Me (Rebecca Stead).
A Wrinkle in Time (Madeleine L’Engle).
Easy A (IMDB).
10 Things I Hate About You (IMDB).
Austenland (IMDB). This is the scene Bec talks about:
Young children may be gruelling, young children may be vexing, and young children may bust and redraw the contours of their parents’ professional and marital lives. But they bring joy too. Everyone knows this (hence: “bundles of joy”). But it’s worth considering some of the reasons why. It’s not just because they’re soft and sweet and smell like perfection. They also create wormholes in time, transporting their mothers and fathers back to feelings and sensations they haven’t had since they themselves were young. The dirty secret about adulthood is the sameness of it, its tireless adherence to routines and customs and norms. Small children may intensify this sense of repetition and rigidity by virtue of the new routines they establish. But they liberate their parents from their ruts too.
All of us crave liberation from those ruts. More to the point, all of us crave liberation from our adult selves, at least from time to time. I’m not just talking about the selves with public roles to play and daily obligations to meet. (We can find relief from those people simply by going on vacation, or for that matter, by pouring ourselves a stiff drink.) I’m talking about the selves who live too much in their heads rather than their bodies; who are burdened with too much knowledge about how the world works rather than excited by how it could work or should; who are afraid of being judged and not being loved. Most adults do not lie in a world of forgiveness and unconditional love. Unless, that is, they have small children.
The most shameful part of adult life is how blinkered it makes us, how brittle and ungenerous in our judgments. It often takes a much bigger project to make adults look outward, to make them “boundless and unwearied in giving,” as the novelist and philosopher C.S. Lewis writes in The Four Loves. Young children can go a long way toward yanking grown-ups out of their silly preoccupations and cramped little mazes of self-interest—not just relieving their parents of their egos, but helping them aspire to something better.
(Jennifer Senior, All Joy and No Fun, HarperCollins, 2014, pp. 98-99.)
A Long Way Home (Saroo Brierley).
Women in Black (book) (Madeleine St John).
Wishful Drinking (Carrie Fisher).
“Because a story involves both data and emotions, it’s more engaging—and therefore more memorable—than simply telling someone, ‘Those berries are poisonous.’” (Source).
Alain de Botton’s lecture “On love” Opera House lecture as part of their Ideas series (1 hr 13 min).
The Good Marriage (Judith Wallerstein and Sandra Blakeslee): terrific book on marriage that asks the question, “What makes marriages last?” and following on from Wallerstein’s lengthy and indepth research into divorce and the effect of divorce on American families.
The Art of Belonging (Hugh Mackay).
Story Genius (Lisa Cron).
What we’re working on
Guan on Twitter (follow him to hear more about the Gathered podcast).
Scott Myers from GoIntoTheStory interviews Mary Coleman, a senior development executive at Pixar: