Monday, August 20, 2012

Because of Prague of 1968, of Aga's Grave of 1975, of Charter of 77

So I love hearing from people who have no time for fiction. Who read only biographies and popular science or [Cold Rivers]. I love hearing about the death of the novel. I love getting lectures about the triviality of fiction, the triviality of making things up. As if that wasn't what all of us do, all day long, all life long. Fiction gives us everything. It gives us our memories, our understanding, our insight, our lives. We use it to invent ourselves and others. We use it to feel change and sadness and hope and love and to tell each other about ourselves. And we all, it turns out, know how to do it.
- from "Everything is Fiction" by Keith Ridgway

Because autumn in Praha was so tempting and because the brothers missed their sisters and because the dream was still alive and I wanted to share some of the Bohemian vistas our fifth wedding anniversary will be ingrained in our memories ...

Late at night on August 20, 1968, they struck like lightning, initiating a massive invasion of their wayward ally. By the morning of the 21st Czechoslovakia was inundated with tanks and troops from East Germany, Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria and the U.S.S.R. Within a week there were over a half million Warsaw Pact troops in the country. In Prague alone 500 tanks controlled strategic locations... False Autumn of 1968

How to live, and how to die. Period. That’s all I’m trying to do, all day long.