Wednesday, July 25, 2007

I Love Books!

My God, I love books.  No this isn't a plug for National Banned Book Week which is coming up in September.  Instead it's just a happy little piece about how I still enjoy the feel, scent, and comfort of a good book or books.

Earlier this year I offered to run the annual book sale at the public library where I am a part time employee.  The books that we sell are donated by our patrons and by other generous people who learn about our sale and who want to help us become the best public library that we can possibly be, people who appreciate the value of a small town library and the many services that it provides to the community at large. 

Call me strange but I love rummaging through and sorting all those boxes upon boxes of donated volumes.  And if any of you have ever been involved with a library book sale you probably know what I am talking about.  I get a genuine high, looking at all those hard covers and paper backs, sorting through the different types of literature out there.  Personally speaking, my favorite sections are the history/political, biography/life stories, and adult nonfiction, although there are certain classics that send gleeful chills of pleasure down the back of my neck.   This year the biography section was both amusing and enlightening.  General Sherman, Abraham Lincoln, Shirley Temple Black, Herman Goering.  Okay, Shirley and Herman are a bizarre coupling, almost as interesting as the Marquis De Sade and Dolly Parton, but that doesn't change the fact that I still get a kick out of books.

I know, I know, we have the Internet, the World Wide Web, but for some reason I don't find the personal comfort, the intimacy on line that I find when I curl up with a good book.  Moreover, there are still tidbits of information that do not always appear on line but which ca only be found in a --you guessed it--a book.  When my team members and I bite off extensive writing projects for The Blue Republic, The Peace Train, or our group blog, we almost invariably use the net to track down tidbits of information, while one of us uses the card catalog at a local library.   Our library, by the way is one of 53 libraries in an even larger consortium of libraries, so in a very real sense we use the net and online card catalogs to track down detailed information that we can't find through Internet searches.  And to be perfectly honest, the material we find in books has, to date, proven more accurate and more detailed than some of the sites we discard during a long and creative writing process. 

So while I appreciate the Internet and its wonderful (and at times not so wonderful contribution to society at large) I feel that I have to put in a plug for the all time classics.  Printed materials.  Books, newspapers, and magazines.  But first and foremost, the wonderful, educational book.

Have a good one


Live Long and Prosper

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