Monday, February 19, 2018

Requiescat In Pace

In case you haven’t heard, I really hate to break the news, but. . . .


I have this doleful discourse on good authority from several reliable sources — the internet, for example. And social media. And even some people I may have inadvertently married or given birth to.   

Apparently, now that our species has digital information at its fingertips, print books are no longer necessary. In this scenario, books are the dinosaurs, and the digital revolution the asteroid. 


For example, blogger Benny Lewis says, "I am absolutely confident that within a few decades books will just be antiques. Collectors or die-hard fans will keep them “alive” in much the same way LPs still exist today." ("Books are dead--it's time to ditch the 15th century technology," Benny Lewis.)

My blood boils a little whenever anyone says that books are dead — meaning print books, of course. But my revenge is to curl up on the couch with a stack of good books and a cup of hot cocoa (with swirly, twirly mounds of whipped cream) until these false prophets are forced to (choose one). . . .
  • jump overboard into the jaws of a great white whale
  • relive adolescence with Holden Caulfield
  • compete in the Hunger Games    and/or
  • reinstate their library cards and read until they get some sense.

Meanwhile I, along with other enlightened ones, will continue to enjoy the heft of a book in my hands, the smell of a used bookstore on a rainy day, the beauty of a well-designed book, the delights of reading a beautiful book by a favorite author, the joy of discovering yet another new favorite.

And along with my precious print books, I’ll also enjoy books in digital and audio formats. I agree with Stephen Fry, who said, “Books are no more threatened by Kindle than stairs by elevators.” Have you noticed? Nobody ever says "Stairs are dead."

I love being surrounded by shelf after shelf (after shelf...) of my old friends, the beloved books that have encouraged and shaped me through the years. Although I must admit that whenever it’s time to move to a new house, I sometimes have a teensy twinge of regret about my book hoarding. (Twinge = "What the bleep was I thinking when I got all these blankety books?")

All those boxes of books are so darn heavy to lift and tote. Just ask my grown children, since they are usually the ones doing the aforementioned lifting and toting. But I feel bad about it. 

I really do.

Oh well, serves them right for saying that books are dead!

(...Um, just kidding, guys! You know that, right? . . .Right?)

So, books are dead? Never! To the contrary, books are alive and thriving. In fact, many of them are living a life of pampering and privilege at my house. You can trust the Stark Raving Mythopath.

Photo Credits:
     Crying angel -- © Can Stock Photo / mkistryn
     Candles -- © Can Stock Photo / Irochka
     Girl reading -- Public Domain
     Bookcases -- Public Domain
     Cartoon of Moving Day -- Public Domain
     Mourner -- © Can Stock Photo / gina_sanders

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