M Elizabeth Parks
meparks at mtholyoke.edu
Wed Mar 21 17:33:22 EST 2001
I have also narrated my life--and nearly caused myself physical harm from
doing that. I was so distracted by my search for the perfect way to
describe something or other that I came withing two inches of a very very
fast Oldsmobile. I would just like to state for the record that if I must
go by car, so to speak, it must be something other than an
Oldsmobile! Maybe a Beetle. . . that's still sad, but in a funny way. I
can see my obit now. . . . um. Getting carried away.
Hmm. Physical harm from reading. I'm quite sure this has happened to me
at one time or another. . . oh, here we go. One of my very worst habits
that I'm trying very very hard to break is reading while I drive. This is
NOT as bad as it sounds. The library I go most often to (and my county
has twenty-some to choose from) has a VERY long traffic light to get out
of it that I somehow ALWAYS hit just after it's been green. I usually
have to wait a good four minutes to get out. I started out just skimming
the backs of the books I'd just gotten--don't go that way. Definate
gateway that leads you to the seamy underside of reading. . . it draws you
in, hooks you. I know this from personaly experiences. The teaser lines
on the front, the backs, the introductions. . . and then one day you're
sitting behind the wheel of your parents' minivan because you're just home
visiting for a weekend (yes, yes, the first thing I do when I come home
from school is hit the library, because the Fairfax County system is far
far superior to anything I have yet found in South Hadley,
Massachusetts) and you left your car at school--but you're used to your
compact car and, well, you've just decided that you, too, are probably
going to like Connie Willis (because I really NEED another addition to
this sentence I'll just say THANKS BECCA!) because Hallelujah she doesn't
like "It's a Wonderful Life" either and then screech.
And if you follow that sentence, I think you deserve an
award. Can I blame it on my very odd connection? Hmm. Yes, well, there
was no damage to me, my parents' minivan, or anything else, but I think
that my heart nearly stopped. And come to think of it, since the problem
was some guy who didn't agree with the whole red light conspiracy, the
only difference (if I hadn't been reading) would have been that I was a
little less surprised.
Other than that. . . . . the first time I read "THe Devil's
Arithmetic" I gave up eating for about three days and almost got
hospitalized. . . and I dropped the complete OZ series--plus Zixi of Ix
and the Santa Claus one, all except for the last hardback--on my foot and
broke my ring toe (or whatever you want to call it). Mostly, I think my
book experiences have been good ones. And if my luck should
change. . . well, I'd much rather be taken out by, say, the Complete Works
of Shakespeare, than I would an Oldsmobile.
p.s. . . . good to hear from you all again!
What's a legendary guy like you doing in a place like this?
On Wed, 21 Mar 2001, Hallie O'Donovan wrote:
> Date: Wed, 21 Mar 2001 20:37:10 +0100
> From: Hallie O'Donovan <hallieod at indigo.ie>
> Reply-To: dwj at suberic.net
> To: dwj at suberic.net
> Subject: Re: Literature Abusers
> >LITERATURE ABUSE: AMERICA'S HIDDEN PROBLEM
> >SELF-TEST FOR LITERATURE ABUSERS
> Just realised they left out physical injury caused by reading!
> I tipped a coffee pot full of boiling water and coffee grounds on my
> leg while reading. Got a burn bad enough to blister - and very
> little sympathy from my mother and step-father, even though I was
> making the coffee for them. <brave sniff>
> Hallie (betting she's not alone in this - and wondering who'll top it
> with far more grievous bodily harm!)
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