February 10th, 2003


Franz Kafka - The collected aphorisms (02-053)

Franz Kafka - The collected aphorisms (02-053)

I admit it. I'm an idiot. I'm obsessed with numbers. Not only do I register every book I read, I even number them, as you might have noted above. Last year (2001) I was aiming for 100 books. I had been travelling through the first 6 months, plenty of time to read therefore. I managed 99. This year, 2002, I thought I needed one more book to read 52. One a week, a nice average. So on the 31st of december I was skimming my shelves to see what would be the last one to read. I took Kafka. Not really a book to read, more suitable for just opening at random once in a while and see if you can follow Kafka. I finished it 45 minutes before the year was over. Not until later did I realise that it was number 53 of the year. Oh well.

Kafka is difficult. Sometimes I´ve got the idea that he deliberately writes some nonsense to confuse his readers. The collected aphorisms were never meant as an entity. After his death they were published as a whole anyway. I like number 5 ´´Beyond a certain point there is no return. This point is to be reached´´. Also number 77 ´´Associating with others seduces one into observing oneself´´

The aphorisms from his 1920 diary are too complicated for me. Or Kafka was too far gone to be understood by mortal souls like myself.