Thursday, July 28, 2005

Surely you're joking, Mr. Feynman.

When I was at graduate school, I read this book 10 times. It was that good. Several years have passed since I last read it, but I still remember some of the funny stuff.
What is great about Richard Feynman is his refusal to take anything too seriously. Rather, he refused to take anything too seriously because he was damn serious. When you think of it, only people who are not really serious appear to be serious. Seriousness in appearance is different from seriousness in essence.
My girl friend at that time used to do private tutoring for students who wanted to do well in university entrance exams. She used to make the student read excerpts from Surely you're joking, Mr. Feynman. She said the pupil liked the chapter on how to become friendly with women. Now, that was funny, with Richard Feynman trying out the instructions of the bar master, almost failing, but then sticking to his gun, and finally getting the reward. If you scratch your head and don't know what it is all about as you read this blog, then you should definitely read this book. I assure you that you would be laughing like mad before long.

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Dr. Mogi,

I have not read the book, but I guess I have got the answer. Since you mentioned this book in your blog it has been on my backlog list. For sure I will read it in English.

One thing I quite often feel a little stress is to talk with native English speakers about some English/American books for which I have read translated one. I (at least think that I) have got a lot to talk about such a book, but they would not come out as I want to. I suppose this is partly because I read it in Japanese. It IS quite tough, but reading in the original language enables a lot more than to go an easy and fast way for just saying "I have read...".

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