Reflections

The Sad Tale of A Bibliophile


Over-exuberant from a generous diet of caffeine, I’ve decided to ramble a bit for the sake of no one other than myself.  Deliriously happy to have stumbled upon a book sale at the local library, it took my entire will to limit myself to a mere thirteen books.  But, for only $1 each, I was half way tempted to cash in my savings and buy every book there, quality be damned.

I am, I must admit, a bit of a bibliophile.  This particular vice is beyond unreasonable for I, like a child eyeing the neat rows of sugared treats behind the glass, have much larger eyes than stomach when it comes to actually reading.  Whenever I perceive a book that is a “good price” that I might possibly, someday, maybe read, I snatch it up before my spouse catches me in the act of yet another book purchase.  This is why, not surprisingly, I have to build new bookshelves to hold the books I haven’t read, while my “finished reading” bookshelf lies condemningly empty.

This unreasonable and gluttonous pursuit of books has led me today to muse about the density of books.  Ever running figures in my head about how I could possibly read enough to catch up with my greedy eyes, I realized the obvious – that not all pages are made the same.  What I mean is, a page of a fiction such as Father Elijah is turned at least once a minute whilst a page of St. Thomas’s Summa (which I am supposed to be reading this very instant) seems to turn not quicker than ten pages per hour.

This, I am sure, surprises no one, but I assume those other bibliophiles out there can relate to the frantic number crunching that goes on every time a new book is attained.  “Hmmm…” I think, “I’ll put it here on my shelf, right after Newman’s Development of Christian Doctrine, which I intended to have finished reading by the end of last month, but now looks like won’t be read until the end of August…which puts me behind on reading Iota Unum which I won’t get to until October at this pace, which means, let me see…” and on and on and on goes the carousal that is my addiction further distracting me from doing that which I intended to do in the first place, that is, reading.

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