Saturday, October 30, 2010

I'm a book snob.

     I just wanted to get that out of the way right up front.  If a book shows up on the NY Times Bestseller List, I automatically think it sucks and I will not read it unless the book proves itself to me somehow.  Either that, or I'm stranded at an airport with nothing to read.  Which never happens because I normally bring multiple books on trips just in case.  Just in case what, you ask?  Well, just in case I lose one.  Just in case I start to read one, but it doesn't hit the spot right then and there.
     I am one of those people who can read multiple books at the same time.  In fact, this is my favorite way to read.  Long ago, I used to go the library with a fantastic big, flowery bag.  I love this bag because it was sturdy denim and pretty, and because I remember the day I bought it at Walmart.  (In case you're wondering, yes, I'm also a store snob but it took me years to develop that and I was still a discount shopper at this time.)  I was twenty years old and employed as a third shift waitress at a local knock-off version of Denny's.  It was called Doc O's.   I did not have the money to buy that bag, but I purchased it in celebration of having just found out that I was pregnant with my son.  He was my first and I was ecstatic!  By the way, I don't remember the exact price of the tote bag, but I would stake my life on it being under $15.  It felt very extravagant buying it and I enjoyed every second of it.  The bag has served me well.  I used it to carry a variety of things while toting first one baby, and then another, a sweet tempered and gorgeous gurgling baby girl.  This bag has been dragged around beaches, minivans, vacations, malls, grocery stores, and Chuckie Cheese more times than I can remember.  We have used it as a pillow, and one particularily memorable day, Cody brought me his sister in this bag.  She didn't mind at all - she was not quite two and giggling uncontrollably.  
     I know it doesn't seem like it, but there really is a point about a book here, I promise.   The baby years were over too quickly and we were on to bigger and better things.  I'm sure we used the bag for many things, but the one thing I can clearly remember doing with it is going to the library.  Over and over again, this bag carried books.  By the way, it's a large and spacious bag, as I'm sure you realized during the toddler toting portion of this story.  First, we picked story books.  Wide, broad and filled with fantastic illustrations, we loved to pile these books around the house and read them at every opportunity.  The best times were before bedtime, and I wonder now who enjoyed it more - me or the kids.  It was glorious and it is probably the single thing I miss most about having small children.  Clean, fresh, and warm, they snuggled up and listened.  Of course, sometimes they fought or wrestled, but mostly they just listened.  I read in funny voices and they laughed deep belly laughs until they turned into tiny little snores.
     What?  Oh, yes - the book.  I just read Eat, Love, Pray by Elizabeth Gilbert.  I have had this book in my possession for quite a while, and it was always relegated to the bottom of the reading list.  Why?  Because I always figure that if the rest of America likes a book, I most likely will not.  I'm just like that regarding books.  I like small press, new voice, off-the-beaten path authors.  I RESEARCH which books to read, I kid you not, and then I carry that list with me at all times.  Just in case a bookstore pops up where one had hitherto not existed.   I am pleased to tell you that the book is great.  America, in this case you are correct.  I recommend this book - it's honest, and well-written and I enjoyed every word.  Kudos, Elizabeth and kudos, America.