Understanding Labyrinthine

2135 words 9 pages
Understanding Labyrinthine "Labyrinthine. The very sound of that word sums it up-as slippery as thought, as perplexing as the truth, as long and convoluted as a life" (Cooper 347). That was how Bernard Cooper ended his insightful and thought-provoking essay "Labyrinthine." Those words haunt me to this very day. Cooper had perfectly described life through the pronunciation of one lone word, "labyrinthine" (630). It was through a trivial infatuation, one that started when he was seven, that Cooper was able to make such a powerful observation. He loved to solve mazes, and he loved to create them even more. He was so fascinated with mazes that it’s no surprise he can so easily come up with an observation like this. This only proves to …show more content…

He got up and started to move again. He began to understand the maze, his own and his parents’, rather than just trying to find a way out of it. Although he is still “lost in the folds and bones of [his] body”, he has a better understanding of what he is trying to do (347). And then there was me. Just like the other two, I hit a dead end. I was infatuated with a single spot briefly. When I finally wandered off, by the time I got to middle school, my maze turned into some kind of hazardous obstacle course. It contained dangerous turns and “blind alleys [that] were especially treacherous”, as if Cooper himself had made my maze (346). It was like I found a whole new route I wasn’t supposed to, not knowing whether I’m going the right way or not. But luckily, my previous experience with that last dead end helped me traverse through that part of the maze.
What was it that made Cooper’s and my experience so different from Phil’s? Cooper and I had infatuations, Phil had an obsession. There is a very thin line between infatuation and obsession, one that is not difficult to cross, but the two are not alike at all. Infatuation is healthy, something everyone should experience. Obsession is not, without realizing, it takes over everything you do. Cooper and I didn’t let infatuations take over our lives. We still lived our lives, but in our free time, a time we set aside just for those infatuations, that time was a moment of pure blissful enjoyment for


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