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Do you remember the old Ed Asner public service commercial? “R.I.F: Reading is Fundamental!” I couldn’t agree more. I love to read. In fact, I can’t remember a time when I didn’t love to read. In elementary school, that was my idea of a good playdate. “Hey, let’s read!” It seemed win-win: hanging out with friends and finishing a good book. Let the good times roll! Yeah, that got shot down pretty consistently. It’s a wonder I had friends at all.

Few people know this, because I usually leave it off of my resume, but I was awarded the title of Spangler Elementary ‘s 7th Grade Super Reader. Oh yes, believe it – truly my fifteen minutes of fame. I think that may well have been the last of my major accomplishments in the scholarly arena. Anyway, I just remember being so determined to win. I mean, if I couldn’t win where the criteria was to lay around and reading page after page of fiction, where exactly could I excel?

That was long ago, though. Now I have to periodically remind myself to pick up a book. Well, aside from cookbooks, which I actually do read cover to cover like a novel. Still, there’s nothing like being caught up in a real page-turner, the kind where you find yourself getting a little bit surly if someone interrupts before you’ve finished the chapter. The flip side of that is being bogged down in a book that’s just not grabbing you. I used to slog along dutifully to the end, but now I’ll abandon midway if need be. I feel like I don’t have time to waste on something that doesn’t interest me, you know? It almost makes me resentful toward the author when I hang on too long, and I’m sure that’s not what they had in mind when they wrote it.

Last year I started keeping a log of completed books to make sure that I was reading enough. “Enough”, of course, is really a subjective term. For me, when I find myself getting a little cranky and restless, sometimes it’s just because I haven’t been reading. Crazy, perhaps, but true. So now I have a record of exactly how much I’ve been reading. “Hmm, something’s bothering me. I feel like I’m forgetting to do something…aha! I’ve only read four books this year! Quick, to the shelves!”

Cheaper than therapy. (Somewhat.)


4 responses »

  1. I haven’t read a good book in sooo long! But do you know what I really took away from this? I miss my terra cotta thing! Mine broke in one of the moves…now I am very sad…

  2. Love it. And isn’t Nancy Drew the best? Email me your mailing address — if you are comfortable doing so. I’ve got a little something I’d like to send your way. 🙂

  3. Look at all those awesome old nancy drew books! Where o where did you find them? Even the binding color is tempting me to open them up & read them again. I can’t wait to get a set for my little girly girl.

    And if you haven’t already read the Nigella Lawson cookbooks… they are an easy breezy, fun kind of read… even if you don’t like the recipes (some are super yummy… like the chocolate egg cake. some are just plain weird, however). It’ a great way to unwind around mid morning, I think.

  4. Look at that — you have the whole Nancy Drew collection!! And sadly I used to have practically the whole collection myself. My grandfather was a school principal so could get us kids all the books we wanted. Wonder what happened to all my Nancy Drews — I’ll have to ask my little sister about that one.

    I’d love to read your book list – I’m always looking for a good read.


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