Looking For Alaska Book Report – Eulogy
Hello everyone. I would like to thank you all for coming to honor our friend, Alaska Young. I am Miles Halter, known to most as Pudge. I transferred to Culver Creek Boarding School from Florida to ‘seek a Great Perhaps’, to leave behind the insignificant things I was doing, to seek something that was perhaps greater. I collect people’s dying words and “I go to seek a Great Perhaps”, were the last words of Francois Rabelais, but unlike him, I did not want to wait to die to start seeking it. This school has given me very many of my firsts: first friend, first dose of mischief and the first and last girl. Alaska was the most enigmatic and mysterious person I have ever met. Every element of her being fascinated me, from her smell of cigarettes, vanilla and sweat, her creativity when planning pranks on our headmaster, her surprising ability to succeed in pre–calculus, and her obsession with strawberry wine, which we had to drink in secrecy. The first time I had a real conversation with her she told me the last words of Simon Bolivar, which I had never heard before “Damn it, how will I ever get out of this labyrinth!” When I asked her what the labyrinth was, she told me that that was the mystery. Is the labyrinth living or dying? Are we all trying to escape the world, or the end of it? This quote completely juxtaposes my Great Perhaps, I looked to seek and she looked to escape. After she died I found a note in one of her books in her ‘life long library’, a collection of books that she had bought from garage sales that she had been accumulating ever since she was young. She had written that the only way out of the labyrinth was straight and fast. Alaska taught me to live in the moment and not to plan ahead. She said “Imagining the future is a kind of nostalgia, you spend your whole life stuck in the labyrinth thinking about how you’ll escape it one day, and how awesome it will be, and imagining the future keeps you...
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