Overcommit


Ironically I googled "Stack of Books" and wound up with this image on a site titled "Pornography for Women"

I Googled “Stack of Books” and wound up with this image on a site titled “Pornography for Women”

I went to the library yesterday to return a stack of books that I had finished and to pick out some new reading material. When I’m being diligent and I have enough free time for reading I can average about four books in the span of the library loan, so I usually try to limit myself to checking out only four or five books at a time.  Except for yesterday, anyway, when I decided it would be a good idea to check out seven.

It’s possible that I might have over-committed.

I think my mistake was that I remembered to bring The List. I keep a list of books that I’m interested in taking a look at but I nearly always forget to bring it with me when I go to the library. When I get there I can only remember a handful of the titles- some of which are not available anyway, and I resort to browsing the Staff Picks and New Releases shelves for titles that catch my eye. This is actually good for me, I think, because it forces me to try new things. A book on the acoustic qualities of sound? Sure. A biography of Robert Oppenheimer? Why not?

I often enjoy the books I select at random even more than I enjoy the books I seek out.

Partly, I imagine, this is because I may select a book at random simply because it interests me in the moment whereas I will often seek out a book that I feel I should read for my own literate hygiene. The meditations of Marcus Aurelius are likely to be very thought provoking, but might not be much fun to read over a bowl of macaroni and cheese while taking a break from work. (I could be wrong- I haven’t read Marcus Aurelius yet, but I’ve got it on my List).

Either way, I have my work cut out for me. As much as I enjoy reading, it does take a bit of effort to keep it a priority when other things are going on in your life. It does require a certain kind of uninterrupted free time to be able to do it- at least for me- which is why I sometimes miss commuting by train because it gave me the chance to retreat into the private world of a book without being expected to be social and/or productive.

So my reading list for the next three weeks is:

“Fight Club” by Chuck Palahniuk

“Occupants” by Henry Rollins

“Meditations” by Marcus Aurelius (And some other stuff. Plato, etc. It’s part of an anthology)

“The Walls Of The Universe” by Paul Melko

“The Sound Book” by Trevor Cox

“Hallucinations” by Oliver Sack

“Robert Oppenheimer: Life Inside the Center” by Ray Monk (luckily I’m already two hundred pages into this one from a previous checkout)

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on July 29, 2014.

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