So, here we are again. That time of year when we're supposed to make resolutions for the coming twelve-months. Newspapers and magazine shows love it -- it gives them an excuse to run stories on weight-loss programs and basket-weaving classes, the kind of stuff that doesn't require ...well, anything in the way of actual reporting. I've always sort of wondered who these people are, the ones who make solemn promises about the year to come, but now I have joined their ranks. Not to lose weight, or improve myself in some unattainable way, but recapture something that I lost somewhere along the road from then to now.Read the whole thing. Stringer goes on to recount the childhood joy of sprinting into a bookstore and scampering through the stacks, on the lookout for narrative treasure hidden between flimsy paperback covers. And, goodness, how I remember those days. I would walk into Joseph Beth Booksellers, a cavernous, two-level store loaded with more books than my single-digit-old mind could comprehend, and lose myself for hours looking for the perfect title to take home. That isn't how I read now. Instead of delightful exploration, I procure titles online or through inter-library loan or surgical strikes on the local Barnes & Noble. And a dearth of free time (or perhaps, in my case, self discipline) has reduced my reading to, in Stringer's words, "a few snatched minutes at bedtime or a guilty pleasure on a beach in summer." The joy is still there, but it's a matchflame rather than a bonfire.
It's easy to forget, in the rush to absorb information by any means necessary, that first absorbing, all-encompassing obsession that books once were and the sheer delight in discovering something new.
How to remedy this? I'm not sure. But learning to read like a child again seems a worthy goal to set while this year is still young.
(Picture: CC 2008 by kokopinto)