Things people say about books and the written word:
“I don’t read.” (My brother Ronny states this most emphatically. He explains after noting the alarm on my face: “I don’t read books. It’s boring. I fall asleep.” He admits that he reads trade publications, newspapers, the Internet, road signs, instructions, legal notices, spread sheets, etc.—but to him, that doesn’t count as reading. Ronny’s not alone…I hear this statement in one form or another each and every week.
“I only read two books in my life—ALL OVER BUT THE SHOUTIN’ and that Bear Bryant book.” Here in Alabama, it’s acceptable to brag about not reading books, but the manly thing to do is admit that you will read something by Rick Bragg or something about late Alabama football coach Paul “Bear” Bryant. Rick would have a ready-made audience if he’d write a book about Bear Bryant.
“I’ve been meaning to read some good books, but I can’t start till I’m retired and have the time.” Kind of like saying you’d like to run the four minute mile but won’t get around to it till you’re 65.
“I plan to read MOBY DICK and James Joyce and Marcel Proust and MEIN KAMPF someday.” These are at the top of a list entitled, “Books and authors everybody means to read.” Word is out that no-one has ever really finished any of them.
And so on and so forth.
My rant to the non-reader:
Failing to read a good book is like ignoring that beautiful, seductive person sitting in the corner of the room yearning to be noticed and cuddled and appreciated by you and you alone. To a person who seems oblivious to the gorgeous potential of a great book, I say, “What’s the matter with you?” Well, I want to say that but don’t.
Mark Twain’s comment remains etched in my mind, “A person who doesn’t read has no advantage over a person who can’t read.”
My judgmental self thankfully remains silent, but I just wish I could inspire you to see books the way I see them.
If the aforementioned beautiful, seductive person sitting in the corner of the room yearning to be noticed and cuddled and appreciated were hidden inside a book, wouldn’t you want to turn the pages, experience the sensual joy and intellectual excitement of true love, real romance? Especially since the affair would be legal and perfectly acceptable?
Nobody will come to take you away just for reading a book to yourself.
Want to try some delightfully adventurous experiences without getting caught?
Are you listening?
Well, if you’re a non-reader, I know you’re not seeing these words.
Guess those of us who know how to travel to the Moon and back in an hour without anybody’s knowing it, will just have to be the people who are having all the safe fun.
Sorry you missed out
(c) 2012 A.D. by Jim Reed