Friday, May 21, 2021

Being reread to


I am tempted, the next time I am asked "What are you reading?", to answer

"Oh. I don't read books. I just reread them."

Moments ago I finished rereading Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain and may soon reread what I think was his second collection, Medium Raw. Holes was a reread just before the Anthony Bourdain, and I've talked about that one in this space a few days ago. I am also halfway through rereading The Blue Sword by Robin McKinley, a book I have read at least half a dozen times, which means I have reread it at least five times.

But the truth is I am reading so much these days, and there is a fair bit of new books in that mix too. I have recently finished reading for the first time Short, Counting by Sevens, and Project Hail Mary. If I must make some pithy quip of an answer to "What are you reading?" it would be more accurate (and equally not all that funny) to reply pompously

"Oh. I don't read books. I have people read them to me."

Anthony Bourdain himself read me Kitchen Confidential and did a masterful job of it, very respectful of the material. He seemed to really understand the author. He was way better than the guy who read Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir. I didn't like that reader, but after awhile I couldn't tell if it was his fault, or if I just wasn't happy with the first person main character as the writer wrote him. Counting by Sevens had a terrific reader and almost went the opposite way, the book is so excellent that all a reader really needs to do is sort of stay out of the way, so maybe she was a great reader or maybe almost anyone would have been with such a terrific book.

All this being read to, and reading so much, is attributable to my recent revolution at work; listening to books through my phone. This brilliant new habit makes me spaced out, disconnected from the work environment, and hard to interact with. Someone asking for my help at the front desk is like slowly waking me up from a dream. Before my new habit no one would have had to even ask for my help. There is no denying it's a downgrade.

On the other hand I have become such a prolific and dedicated shelver and processer of material that all the work of the library is getting done curiously early, so who cares if I'm like a heroin addict, slumped in a corner, bluetooth bud shoved in my ear, vaguely staring into space with a dreamy look in my eyes for most of the evening. 

1 comment:

  1. If I were to visit your library, how would I distinguish between you "slumped in a corner, bluetooth bud shoved in my ear, vaguely staring into space with a dreamy look in my eyes for most of the evening" and one of your more challenging patrons?

    Oh, would be the earbud. Your most challenging patrons get their input from little green men.


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