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20 October 2012 @ 06:18 pm
My favorite things  
Read this piece from the Wall Street Journal early this morning:  http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444868204578064483923017090.html

While I love the story of someone's reading life, there is much in this piece with which I disagree.  For instance, " If you have read 6,000 books in your lifetime, or even 600, it's probably because at some level you find "reality" a bit of a disappointment."  In reality, I do not find my life at all disappointing.  I get to teach about topics I love; I am asked to visit places and talk about books and reading;  I get to read and write about books. No disappointment here.  And I have read many more than 6000 books in this lifetime.  I am approaching 700 for this year already. 

And this:  "Electronic books are ideal for people who value the information contained in them, or who have vision problems, or who have clutter issues, or who don't want other people to see that they are reading books about parallel universes where nine-eyed sea serpents and blind marsupials join forces with deaf Valkyries to rescue high-strung albino virgins from the clutches of hermaphrodite centaurs, but they are useless for people engaged in an intense, lifelong love affair with books."  I find audio and eBooks allow me to read even more, and is that not the point of it all?  While I do love the feel of a book, the smell of a book, I can fall into a book whether it is on a computer screen or flowing into my ears.

Having now pointed out my problems with this piece, let me point you to two incredibly important points, points that are true I suspect, for each and every one of us.   This struck a resonant chord, "I still organize my daily life—such as it is—around reading. As a result, decades go by without my windows getting washed."  I can sit and read and let the rest of the world fall away (we call this unconscious delight, by the way).  My BH can spend hours doing the same. Most of my friends know this feeling, too.  It is a luxury to spend a day (as I did today) totally absorbed in reading.  It is why I put together tortilla soup in a crockpot about 8 am.  As  BH and I took breaks from reading, we dipped out soup and then went right back to the books.

And there is this, "I've never squandered an opportunity to read." How many of us travel with books (packed first in my case) plus iPod and Kindle or some manner of eBook reader?  I have to consider how long the flight (and ensuant flight delays) will be.  I want to be certain I have enough to get me through airports.  I have a friend who asked me once if I knew how long the average red light was.  Response, until the car behind you honks.  He read at traffic signals.  Thanks to audiobooks I do not have to do this (and in Texas, this could be life-threatening in any event). 

As I gaze at the stack of books waiting to be blogged as well as those waiting to be read, I know my reading life will be a full one.  It is one of my favorite things. And now I will return to my books.  Adieu.
Current Location: home
Current Mood: cheerfulcheerful
Elaine Willis: pic#118947606Elaine Willis on October 21st, 2012 11:26 am (UTC)
Not to interrupt your reading . . .
but I also pack my books before anything else. At least I plan which books I am going to take first. I always over pack. I don't take any chances I will run out of something to read.

That is the wonderful thing about the eReader. Although I always pack some print books, I can really load up the reader without risking a back injury.

A few years ago, my husband and I took an Amtrak trip across the country. We were gone almost three weeks. I had an entire backpack dedicated to just books.

The next trip he told me to put them on my eReader. He didn't care if I had already bought them in print. It was worth the extra money.

Did I mention he was the only one able to pick up the backpack?
patty1943patty1943 on October 21st, 2012 05:04 pm (UTC)
I thought he was pretty funny, but I'm with you. I have piles of books and I also add things to my iPod to read because it is easier than carrying them around. If I love them, then I might buy them, although I am trying to let go of books I haven't read and probably won't. I think I am a book-a-holic.