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Laid back; chilled out.

Monday, September 28, 2009


Sometimes I think I'm an idiot. Whatever happened to my natural-born Kenyan hustle? Allow me to explain:

My appetite for reading material [fiction, for the most part] is voracious. When I first discovered libraries I thought I was in virtual heaven: with a free library card I could go home with any book? How ridiculously amazing is that? So I attacked the fiction shelves alphabetically, no less. I wasn't working or going to school then so I had all day, and best believe I lived in the library. I'd get into the Quiet Room at noon and leave much later. I read a book a day, seriously.

In a few short months I'd exhausted the tiny library's inventory. School and work started soon after and I didn't have as much time to kill, so I joined the largest library in the area, assuming they had more inventory. And they did. Not only that, but they sold used novels at the ridiculous rate of $.50 each. Fifty cents?! Sweetness! So I'd go get 10-20 books at a time, and life was just dandy.

It only took 3 trips to the library before I realized I had a major problem - I was accumulating too many books. The shelf quickly filled up and I started stacking them floor to ceiling. Fortunately, some girl who worked next to my workplace was as voracious a reader as I, if not more so, and we'd swap books all the time like it was dope. I'd go to her crib or she to mine, or at work, and we'd pop the whips' trunks and swap trash-bagfuls of them joints. Plus, she knew this one place where she could trade or sell books for 50 cents, so I was good. All too soon tho, she had to move to another state and I was again stuck with the problem of having too many damn books.

So I stopped reading as much, if only to keep my bedroom floor book-free. I still bought the occasional book from the grocery or drugstore, but they're [comparatively] expensive there.

And then I discovered Borders, and it was a wrap. The sheer volume of books, brand new titles especially, was mind-blowing. But then I learned real quick that new books, when they first come out, are only in hardcover, not paperback. I don't give a sh*t about hardcovers; I'm more interested in a book's content - and its price. So while brand-spanking-new paperbacks could go for $8.00, their thick-skinned counterparts can go for as much as $30. That's way too much for a book I'll only read once.

So, back to the issue of my lost hustle: I've been patiently waiting for Dan Brown's latest, The Lost Symbol. I went to Borders yesterday to check it out and it was finally available - for about $30, no less. But then it hit me like a thunderbolt: Why not grab the book, find a nice comfy seat, read as much of it as I could then put it back on the shelf?

And so I did just that. And as far as I can tell, that's what I'll be doing from now on with books I know I'll only read once. I know a good number of you probably do this already, but I can't believe it just recently occurred to me. I so feel like an idiot!

Matter of fact, I gotta go back right now and read a couple more chapters; the plot's got me already.

Later y'all. Be true to yourself.


Hip-Hop verse of the day:

"She be jumpin' up and down tryin' to fit that a$$ in
Took her half an hour just to get that belt to fasten..."

Drake in Young Money's Every Girl


Mo said...

Join the club! :D

I'm a bibliophile like you; the librarian at my high school would drop her jaw each time I walked up to the counter with a new book seemingly hours after I had borrowed another.

So you can imagine my delight when I went off to Uni and discovered HUGE bookstores in my city and, upon seeing comfy armchairs in a section of the place, was told one could read books without paying for them!

I'd spend 3 - 6 hrs finishing up a new release or some classic, grab a chai frappuccino and walk home with a spring in my step. Life was good back then.

Other than the cheapskates (like you and me. lol), it worked brilliantly for the bookstores cause I'd see many read what seemed like a few pages to a chapter then buy the book and go home with it. I wonder how a similar concept would fare in Nairobi...

BTW, the biggest Borders in the world was in the city where I lived. That double-story baby housed within a mall was f*cking MASSIVE (it even had escalators, cafes and whatnot inside it!)... Excuse me, I'm having a bit of a moment reminiscing over it...

|d®| said...

Ah, a fellow literary enthusiast! Or is that fanatic? lol!

Holy sh*t - a double-storied Borders?! That's even better than when I discovered that double-story Best Buy!

Funny, but I'm glad to see a comfortable chair means as much to you as it does to me when it comes to enjoying a book!

Mo said...

Hehe, FANATIC sounds about right.

"Holy sh*t - a double-storied Borders?!"

I know, right? When I first went there, I spent hours on the ground floor (which was really big in its own right) then I saw a seemingly random escalator and took it thinking it was going to the rest of the mall. Imagine my surprise when I saw that it led to the other half of the bookstore! :D

"Funny, but I'm glad to see a comfortable chair means as much to you as it does to me when it comes to enjoying a book!"

Comfort is key! Some people would sit on the carpeted floor but me... I'd time those chairs and the minute someone got off one, more or less flew to it like a bat out of hell stares (and glares) be damned. lol

3CB said...

we-ell, i love my books but i'm not quite as voracious as the two of you :-) I used to read a lot more than i do now, life, laziness, and 40-in-1 DVDs got in the way.

i do love my reading chair though, it's my aim to find the perfect one for my room, the kind you can sink into, curl up the legs or swing them over the arm, read a huge book from start-to-finish then finally get up and stretch without bum cramps...bliss! with the average chair you have to get up every few hours to adjust your position.

i found this perfect one in Mazsons hotel in zanzibar, wished i could carry it home!!

|d®| said...

>Mo: Yup - I never did understand how one could read cross-legged on the floor for an extended period of time and actually enjoy a read. But then again, maybe the need to read exceeds creature comforts!

You gotta tell me what city that Borders is in, man. If it's in close proximity I might make an excursion to go explore it!

>CB: Found one good chair this past weekend in some library and speed-read an entire Dean Koontz in a couple of hours, much to my 'study partner's' amazement. It was the chair - I haven't read that fast in eons.
I envy your chair - haven't found one yet that's 'The One,' but the couch comes close. I prefer it to the bed, even for sleep!

Anonymous said...

Dude, I have been reading books for free in borders for ages now. its the best..In the west coast 2 stotey borders are now common place.

|d®| said...

Never seen one yet. Not around here anyway.

And yes, I feel like an idiot for wasting all that time - and money - by actually buying overpriced books I'd never read again.

cloudvillian™ said...

As i recall, you were once giving away some your books in an earlier post. Glad to see you've now addressed the ROOT of your 'problem'. :-) Happy weekend bro. Peace.

|d®| said...

Ha ha! You're right about that! Best of both worlds - read 'em but don't stack 'em!

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