Odd facts: What did Susan Sontag like?

Odd facts: What did Susan Sontag like?

In the second volume of Susan Sontag's diaries, “As Consciousness Is Harnessed to Flesh”, there is a note that is stuck in my head. It’s an entrance from 21st February 1971, and it might as well be my favourite part of the whole book.

Here, Susan is making a list of things she likes and dislikes. Almost like a stream of consciousness, it’s simple, it’s beautiful and decadent at the same time. For some reason, it makes me feel good in a special way. Why is that? Maybe reading about things that someone else is fond of creates a special moment of intimacy. It can make you feel connected to a person you had never met and will never get to know personally.

So here is this list of peculiar objects, places or activities that makes life special, albeit in a different place and century, but the happiness they trigger doesn't change - it’s like walking into a room with large windows, full of sunlight.

 

Things Susan Sontag and I like:

fires, Venice, tequila, sunsets, heights, coarse salt, pocket watches, the smell of newly mown grass, linen, Bach, sushi, microscopes, large rooms, boots, drinking water, ivory, sweaters, architectural drawings, urinating, pizza, staying in hotels, paper clips, the color blue, leather belts, making lists, caves, asking questions, taking taxis, eucalyptus trees, hands, raw peas, socks, bridges, Dürer, escalators, hot weather, white walls, horses, rattan furniture, sitting cross-legged, stripes, large windows, fresh dill, reading aloud, going to bookstores, under furnished rooms, dancing

 

Things I like that Susan Sontag did not like: 

sleeping in an apartment alone, cats, swimming, anchovies, washing my hair, writing letters, taking showers, wearing a wrist watch, being in the sun, freckles, licking envelopes, taking photographs