Laurie Stone at The Paris Review:
If there were a point to life, the point would be pleasure. I knew a man, an Italian communist, who liked to say, raising a glass of champagne and nibbling a blini with caviar, “Nothing’s too good for the working class.” Kafka’s Hunger Artist explains to the overseer at the end of the story he’s not a saint, nor is he devoted to art or sacrifice. He’s just a picky eater. “I have to fast. I can’t help it … I couldn’t find the food I liked. If I had found it, believe me, I should have made no fuss and stuffed myself like you or anyone else.”
I once promised a man who was touchy about his privacy I would keep his secrets, and I kept his secrets. Otherwise I have made few promises, and I have never made a resolution. Today Richard was grumpier than me, and it made me so happy I was nice the whole time we walked. I love my phone. I love the first sip of a cocktail when the elevator drops. There is a woman I don’t love and can’t stop thinking about. I love that I will never understand my connection to her. There is a kind of vulnerability that makes me feel my whole life is stretched out in front of me. In a way, it is.