"I asked my schoolmate Mary to write a letter to me. She was funny and full of life. She liked to run around her empty house without any clothes on, even once she was too old for that. Nothing embarrassed her. I admired that so much, because everything embarrassed me, and that hurt me. She loved to jump on her bed. She jumped on her bed for so many years that one afternoon, while I watched her jump, the seams burst. Feathers filled the small room. Our laughter kept the feathers in the air. I thought about birds. Could they fly if there wasn’t someone, somewhere, laughing?"
— Jonathan Safran Foer