So many books …

So many books to read, and so little time.  I believe public libraries are evaluated on how many books they can lend out each year.  It that’s true, I’m doing a yeoman’s job for the Menlo Park Library.  Not that I get through most of what I borrow, though – I’d guess under 25% of the books I borrow are actually “read,” another 25% are skimmed and discarded, and the remaining 50%+ renewed, renewed, and returned … from whence [they] sprang, unwept, unhonored, and unsung.

Which are much more impressive numbers than for material I own. If you want me to not read a book, there’s no better way than to give it to me.  At that point, it drops to lower priority than anything the library (a block away) can provide, i.e. forever in the “important but not urgent” queue.  So often – this happened just today – I’m leafing through my bookshelves and discover a book I’ve never heard of.  How did it get there?!  And so often – TMI warning – I’ve bought a book I already owned!  Sometimes (typically non-fiction) books are purchased and shelved separately, and can live parallel and equally unread existences for years.

I heard yesterday about a school teacher friend of a friend who took an entire school year off … to read.  Now that is a good idea.  (I wonder whether he was reading the contents of the public library, or his own.)

Excuse me, I have some catching up to do …


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