Dispatches from Suburbia

If I played an instrument, I would have a band called "The Simon Thomsen Sex Tape"; and other musings, rants, and disconnected ramblings.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Rummaging Through Old Books and Other Lives

Quotes of the Day: "[the Song of Songs] deserves to be destroyed in order to prevent simple souls from being ensnared by it."
-Meir of Narbonne
"The whole world is not worth the day the 'Song of Songs' was written."
-Rabbi Akiva

I went to the used book store today. I love these places--the musty smell, the disarray that, I can imagine, would be what my office would look like if I had one, and a quiet clerk happy to answer any questions in their mild-mannered way.

I picked up two books: For Kim, Anthropologist on Mars by Oliver Sacks; and for me Little Children by Tom Perrotta (which, I must add, is excellent--I'm already 70 pages into it). I love used books. I love new books to, but used books always seem to have that extra layer of depth. Inside of Little Children, I found a white plastic coffee stirrer from McDonald's and a small, yellow slip of paper with "to do" notes, one of which was "call Cynthia Izaguirre-KOAT" (Izaguirre is a local newscaster). So, along with Perrotta's richly drawn characters I've been given a glimpse into the lives of even more. The notes on the slip of paper were weren't in what looked to be female's hurried cursive, though I've known men with fairly "feminine" handwriting. Anyway, I've given the former owner a sex and I've deduced that they drink coffee from McDonald's. And, for some reason, they have to speak to a local newscaster about something.

In a way, I've created a character. It feels a bit like a writing exercise from class.


At 5:04 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I loved this story. Old book stores remind me of museums, estate sales, etc. Going through someone else's life, imagining what the reader, or person that lived in the house was like. Some think it is an invasion of privacy, but I just love going through someone else's things, or books. It gives such a feeling of the past, and some other life. I use my imagination so much. Keep this story going, I'd love to read it.


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