This poor little guy borrowed a book way ahead of his reading level. I feel pretty bad for him.
Here’s Libeary, India ink and watercolor on 9×12 watercolor paper.
I took a walk this morning. I don’t know why; I never take walks in the morning. Maybe once in a blue moon do I take one in the afternoon, or any time of day, but never in the morning. Wild hair today, I guess.
I headed towards the library without meaning to, just random turns until there it was in front of me. It was starting to get a little warm out, and air conditioning and books are just about the best two things I can think of, so I pushed the door open for the blessed cool air to hit me.
It was like a wave of relief washing over me. I do like me some AC. I moseyed over to the fiction section, tossing a hand up at the librarian as I passed by her desk. She smiled and kept typing whatever it was she was typing on her computer.
I let my hand slide across the spines of the books as I walked down the aisles. Just the feel of books is enough to settle me sometimes. I paused when a cover caught my eye, and I pulled it off the shelf to have a look. I cracked it open and was about to read a few words when I heard someone talking on the other side of the shelf.
It was a woman, her voice library quiet . If I’d been another row over I wouldn’t have heard her, but I liked the way she spoke. The rise and fall of her words, so soft I couldn’t make them out, soothing as the books themselves.
I kept the book in my hand as I walked around the end to find out whose voice it was, but she must have been ahead of me, because when I turned the corner, no one was there. I continued on to the next row, and the next, but I couldn’t find her. I decided she must have gone to check out whatever books she had, so I went to the desk, pulling out my wallet to remove my library card.
I asked the librarian who the girl was who just left, but she looked confused, and told me I was the first patron of the day. I laughed it off, saying I must have been hearing ghosts, and took my book and walked back home.
I sat down in my recliner and cracked the fresh book open. A few pages in, I closed it and put it down. It was a mockery of good fiction, nothing I could read. I need a story that pulls me in, at least a little bit, and this one didn’t, at all. Well, you win some and you lose some.
I laced my fingers behind my head and leaned back in my chair while the dog wheezed and sputtered in the other room.
13 minutes, and it finished itself. I choose number 17. TBP OLWG #18
You know I have a ton of books, right? If you didn’t, let me tell you, I have a ton of books.
My parents have a ton and a half of books. But theirs are still boxed up in storage, so it’s been my self-imposed mission to pick and choose books for them to read.
It’s fun. You know how in books and movies there’s always that cool librarian who knows just the book to give the protagonist? That’s me now. Terribly entertaining.
On top of that, a friend of mine started a local Facebook book swap group.
My pal posted up some classics for trade, and I needed to get War and Peace, because any book jjiraffe recommends is going on my list. He dropped it off and told Ian for me to just pick one out for him so he’d likely get something he wouldn’t have chosen for himself. Smart guy.
I chose We Need to Talk about Kevin, and Ian chose Snow Crash. Both excellent books, but I couldn’t find the one I had in mind. I suppose it’s just as well I didn’t, because then I’d have had to read it first, and I’ve lost track of how many books I’m currently reading. It’s a few.
It’s cool, though, picking and choosing who gets to read what. Because no matter what I thought of the book, no one else is going to have exactly the same reaction to it as I did. Even a single sentence can bring this about, as I learned after a certain Listserve email. Thanks for that, William, if you’re still reading along.
But I don’t really talk about books with anyone other than Ian, so I don’t know why this is so enjoyable. It just is.