Monday, April 11, 2016

Celebrating Book Drunkenness

Reading widely obvious has advantages. Your vocabulary will grow. You might win games of Scrabble, or at least take home laurels for scoring the most points per word. You'll be familiar with reams of cultural references which is something I especially enjoy. It will give you something to talk about with strangers or to think about on road trips. Reading's great. We all acknowledge that. But I'm always thrilled when I find even more ways reading is fantastic. Want to know what some of those are?

When dead authors and current wordsmiths express matching sentiments about a subject:

"They dress a man up in peacock feathers and insist on looking at him that way. Up to the very last moment they hope for the best. They have a kind of foreboding as to what's on the other side of the coin, all right, but they wouldn't breathe a word of it, perish the thought! They keep pushing the truth away with both hands. Until such a time as the peacock man steps out of his feathers and personally crowns them fools."
-Crime & Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky

"And so it goes one foot after the other till black and white begin to color in. And I know that holding us in place is simply fear of what's already changed."
-Sara Bareilles "Manhattan"

When other people cherish the books that have grown to be a part of your heart: 

A photo posted by Washington Post (@washingtonpost) on

When you check out a book from the library and it still has the sign-out sheet in the back. All those people. All their stories. All the thoughts they thought while reading it.

When you read a line and it feels so perfect that you have to reach for a scrap of paper, the back of a receipt, or even your phone's notes section and write it down.

When you're traveling and notice someone is reading a book you've enjoyed.

On the airplane when everyone else has to put down their device but you smile and continue reading.

When you know the topography of a book so well that  you can remember events just by looking at a stain or a crumpled page.

Now 'scuse me while I reply to a letter and elbow room for Crime & Punishment.


Unknown said...

I love this post :) It's so very true. Also, I've never read Crime and Punishment. How is it?

Skye Hoffert said...

Books, I'm not sure what I would do without them!