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  • This is Vermeer's View of Delft. I love it, I absolutely love it, and once saw it in a travelling exhibition in Paris.

    The reason I particularly wanted to see it, when we spotted a sign announcing the exhibition, was that I had just been reading Proust. (I was in my twenties and Proust was my idol. Still is, actually...)

    Anyway, in A la recherche du temps perdu, a writer goes to see this picture (in a touring exhibition in Paris) because he is obsessed with a little patch of yellow wall. Then he dies.

    But my story doesn't end there. Critics are still debating which piece of yellow wall is the particular "petit pan de mur jaune" Proust had in mind. They are obsessed with it.

    This is a metaphor for life I think. I was explaining how this utterly thrills me (the complete lack of a definite answer, the constant search, the obsession, the leads, the dead ends, the constant analysis) to my husband. He said, "Ah, I see. A meta obsession. You'll be sorry they found the Higgs Boson, then."

    Yes. Probably.

    (Hey - if you too want to become obsessed, this is good:
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