Annotations for Big Surprise, the fifth chapter of One Rainy Day In May.

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"We're all they,ve got, Walt."

"That's not enough."

From Moonrise Kingdom by Wes Anderson. The whole dialogue:

Laura Bishop (Frances McDormand): I'm sorry, Walt.

Walt Bishop (Bill Murray): It's not your fault.


Walt Bishop: Which injuries are you apologizing for, specifically?

Laura Bishop: Specifically? Whichever ones still hurt.

Walt Bishop: Half of those were self-inflicted.

[staring at ceiling, storm rages outside]

Walt Bishop: I hope the roof flies off, and I get sucked up into space. You'll be better off without me.

Laura Bishop: Stop feeling sorry for yourself.

Walt Bishop: Why?

Laura Bishop: [sighing] We're all they've got, Walt.

Walt Bishop: That's not enough. (IMDb)

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the formation of ideas or concepts


affect, befall, afflict - meaning Astair is used to not doing what she wants to (execute her ideas) because of her parent(s) and that she doesn't want to do the same to her daughters

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Itsy Bitsy Spider

a popular nursery rhyme and fingerplay that describes the adventures of a spider as it ascends, descends, and re-ascends the downspout or "waterspout" of a gutter system (or, alternatively, the spout of a teapot or open-air reservoir): The itsy bitsy spider climbed up the waterspout. Down came the rain and washed the spider out. Out came the sun and dried up all the rain and the itsy bitsy spider climbed up the spout again (Wikipedia)

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old widow

Madame Clicquot, known as the "Grand Dame of Champagne", was a French businesswoman who took on her husband's wine business when widowed at 27. Under her ownership, and her skill with wine, the company developed early champagne using a novel technique. The brand and company of Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin still bears her name (Wikipedia)

Phenix Opal Eller

probably allusion to Mark Z. Danielewski's sister, Poe

Ice Cream Koans

A koan is a paradoxical anecdote or riddle without a solution, used in Zen Buddhism to demonstrate the inadequacy of logical reasoning and provoke enlightenment. In this context it sounds like the word "cones".

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Exegesis is a critical explanation or interpretation of a text, particularly a religious text (Wikipedia)

Langs frame

The Frame in psychotherapy refers to the environment and relationship which enables the client to be open about their life with the therapist, and in a secure and confidential manner make a change. It is one of the most important elements in psychotherapy and counselling (Wikipedia)


  1. To surround and shut in; enclose
  2. A short cough or clearing of the throat made especially to gain attention, warn another, hide embarrassment, or fill a pause in speech


  1. an inarticulate utterance, as of hesitation,


  1. the third eyelid or nictitating membrane in certain mammals, especially dogs

and cats

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pro delayed gratification

Instant and delayed gratification: The term instant gratification is often used to label the satisfactions gained by more impulsive behaviors: choosing now over tomorrow. The skill of giving preference to long-term goals over more immediate ones is known as deferred gratification or patience, and it is usually considered a virtue, producing rewards in the long term. While one might say that those who lack the skill to delay are immature, an excess of this skill can create problems as well; i.e. an individual becomes inflexible, or unable to take pleasure in life (anhedonia) and seize opportunities for fear of adverse consequences. However, it is said that individuals who seek wisdom tend to attain the fortitude to apply equal balance. There are also circumstances, in an uncertain/negative environment, when seizing gratification is the rational approach, as in wartime (Wikipedia)


reticulate -

1. resembling a net or network; especially  :  having veins, fibers, or lines crossing

2. being or involving evolutionary change dependent on genetic recombination involving diverse interbreeding populations

dead waters

a phenomenon which can occur when a layer of fresh or brackish water rests on top of denser salt water, without the two layers mixing. A ship powered by direct thrust under the waterline (such as a propeller), traveling in such conditions may be hard to maneuver or can even slow down almost to a standstill (Wikipedia)

God fastens the universe in the movement of God

Full quote: In order to explain the difference between the works of God and of men to Azzar, the cabinetmaker, Reb Jorda chose the example of the nail.

"Is the sky not nailed with stars?" he said.

"Can you compare them to the nails you use to fasten together parts of furniture? God fastens the universe in the movement of God." (from The Book of Questions by Edmond Jabès)

Edmond Jabès

a Jewish writer and poet, and one of the best known literary figures to write in French after World War II. The work he produced when living in France in the late 1950s until his death in 1991 is highly original in its form and its breadth (Wikipedia)

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a sudden feeling of feverish heat, typically as a symptom of menopause

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bathroom closet, second shelf...

seemingly pointless details, but the envelope is stowed similarly like the word in multiple parentheses

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Capital city of Alaska (North America).

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died of wounds


Died of Wounds Received in Action

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zhong The Orb