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Monday, 30 July 2012

A letter I should eventually send (if I can get my aunt MT to mail it for me)

Hello,

No complimentary bag of coffee this time. I'll give you time to miss it ;). Today I'm writing to wish you a hardly-timely happy prime birthday (you're turning 31, right?). 

You know... incidentally, I'm all out of words. I have absolutely no idea what to write and I'm supposed to hand my aunt the letter tomorrow if it's to be sent at all. If I can't make it on time then I'll have to do without the hand-written letter.

Some other day, you should (fingers crossed) receive a present to go with this.

And now... do I say goodbye already? Is it not silly, now, to have a letter delivered with no purpose other than to say happy birthday? Goodness, shouldn't I have something worth saying? Can one be quite so speechless? I do know how I want to end it, 

Your friend


linaThumbe
(finally-a-mathematician)

What else is there to say? Best wishes? Writing him letters and e-mails used to be easy... Whatever is the matter? Do I have anything I'd like to tell him about? Haven't I had any entertaining dreams lately? How about talking about the present itself?

Now, do pretend you got this other page on the same day as the package so it makes at least a little sense:

I'm hoping you'll like the book, even though there's nothing in it about fishing, or even about maths... Well, maybe if you put in this drawing *insert drawing of a fish doing maths* in the book somewhere you'll find something about it to like. I do believe fish are actually mentioned in the book at some point, so bonus points if you find them.

I'm hoping you won't mind reading an English translation of the book. I just didn't know how good your Russian is. I do happen to trust this translation to be faithful to the most complete version of the book (I may have mentioned before that there are several versions out there which have been censored in varying degrees).

All kidding about the scarcity of fish and maths in the book, I think you just might like it. While the characters aren't as deep as the ones by Dostoievski (perhaps it's best to leave such characters to the writers who can do them justice), the book reminded me of the ending of Crime and Punishment as you described it. In addition to that, even in the translation there's plenty left of the original wordplay and there's a lot to be said of the satire in the book. 

By the time this reaches you, I will have quite a bit more to talk about. Whenever I'm not out settling in, shopping and doing paperwork, I will most likely be trying to find a nerd haven. For now, I'm planning to look for are Neil Gaiman's books and graphic novels... And copies of Stephen Hawking's books, and the other book by Roger Penrose... Well, that and the nearest theatres' programmes in case there are any plays or musicals worth going to. 

Nope, it won't do to start talking about myself. I'm supposed to talk about him. It's his birthday. Maybe I'll try again tomorrow morning.

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