I knew that a historian (or a journalist, or anyone telling a story) was forced to choose, out of an infinite number of facts, what to present, what to omit. And that decision inevitably would reflect, whether consciously or not, the interests of the historian.
The ball was held in a middle-class home. The girls were anemic - some of them; the others were red as raspberries. John liked the pale ones best, the ones with black or blue rings round their eyes. They looked so sad and suffering and pitiable, and they cast tender yearning glances at him, such yearning glances.
And he absolutely had to find her at once to tell her that he adored her, but the large audience before him separated him from the door, and the notes reaching him through a succession of hands said that she was not available; that she was inaugurating a fire; that she had married an american businessman; that she had become a character in a novel; that she was dead.