May 17 2020: People ask me why I spend so much time reading “old books”. They means classics, although sometime I think people see books in general as outdated technology. I’m retro! The truth is that I see literacy as resistance. Stating that I read, and that I read things that aren’t just light entertainment, is was way of showing that I don’t stand with the know-nothings that currently run far too much of the world. It hearkens back to a time when being educated, not being ignorant, was a badge of honor.
Yes, I am admitting that I am pretentious. Look at me, I read books, I am smart. Worse, I am proud of that fact, and I look down on people who think reading is stupid. Not the poorly educated, or the learning disabled. People who make a conscious and active choice to be ignorant. Understand the difference.
I do read living authors as well. That’s something I need to call out more, because they need book sales more than Thackeray or the Brontë sisters. Maybe I should do something akin to Warren Ellis, and throw out a post on what I’m reading along with a synopsis and a link. I mention them less because they have less household-name recognition. It muddies the messaging when you don’t know who they are or what they write.
Literacy as Resistance
The reason I don’t read more is two-fold. Possibly three-fold, depending on how you parse it. First, I prefer physical books. The selection of books in English available locally is limited. It can be costly to get them shipped in. Space in this apartment is at a premium. That leaves me with ebook, which is fine, but I hate my ereader. The controls aren’t compatible with my arthritic hands, the battery life is worthless, and it gets hot. All of which comes down to, I just need to get a new ereader.
The second reason is that I watch streaming content when I could be reading. It’s something my wife and I can do together, especially in quarantine. I vacillate on cancelling the services and trying to convince Katie that we could take walks instead. Which reduces consumption, but doesn’t add more reading time. Killing Netflix and HBO is like turning off the router to have internet-free time, though. I’d do it if it were just me, but Katie uses it too.
May 17 2020
- If you get anything out of these blog posts, consider buying me a coffee. You can also purchase one of my books or zines from Gumroad or DriveThruRPG.
- I check all email and Twitter DMs, personal and professional,
three timesonce a day. I respond as time allows; if it requires some thought or research on my part, it will take me longer.
- I am actively avoiding news and social media to focus on writing. Please take your information from reliable sources and certified experts, not the Mad Carrot and its puerile cultists.
- Today is Day 62 in isolation.