Jaquandor did this quiz around the time a couple months ago when people were shocked, SHOCKED that Americans aren’t reading books like they used to. Actually, I do sympathize. I joined a book club through my [former] church for about a decade (1986-1996), and that forced me to read 10 books a year. Not only that, I was required to read genres that I wouldn’t have necessarily read on my own, such as fantasy or home improvement, instead of my usual non-fiction selections of biographies and books about music, movies, sports and history. Now I read maybe 3 or 4 books a year, and the year Lydia was born, quite possibly only the Bradley method book.
I mean, in my job, I read all the time, but it’s not whole books. It’s reports, book sections and reference material.
Of course, I’m taking this to mean books I read for myself. I read lots of books to Lydia, at least a couple per day.
What are you reading right now?
The Genius of Impeachment: The Founders’ Cure for Royalism by John Nichols.
Do you have any idea what you’ll read when you’re done with that?
Probably A Day Apart: How Jews, Christians and Muslims find freedom, and joy on the Sabbath by Christopher D. Ringwald, who I know. But I still need to get back to Shrub by Molly Ivins, which I was reading before I read that Stax book, Soulville, U.S.A.
What magazines do you have in your bathroom right now?
At any give time, Newsweek, Entertainment Weekly or Jet, though my wife and my daughter are always bringing them out and giving them to me. when I was growing up, we ALWAYS had magazines in the bathroom, a wicker basket with my mother’s Ladies’ Home Journal; I always used to read “Can this marriage be saved?”
What’s the worst thing you were ever forced to read?
Don’t know that it was the worst, but Johnny Tremain, a junior high assignment, sticks in my mind. So does Ivanhoe.
What’s the one book you always recommend to just about everyone?
I don’t recommend books.
Admit it, the librarians at your library know you on a first name basis, don’t they?
Well, yeah, but it’s mostly because I bring Lydia to the library to get videos and books. Also, because I’m on the board of The Friends of the Albany Public Library.
Is there a book you absolutely love, but for some reason, people never think it sounds interesting, or maybe they read it and don’t like it at all?
You mean, besides the World Almanac, which I find utterly fascinating?
Do you read books while you eat?
No, maybe newspapers or magazines. I don’t want food to get on the book.
While you bathe?
No, but I shower, so it seems impractical.
While you watch movies or TV?
Not movies. TV- rarely; usually periodicals during baseball.
While you listen to music?
While you’re on the computer?
Only if engaged in downloading or uploading something that will take a while.
While you’re having sex?
While you’re driving?
When you were little, did other children tease you about your reading habits?
Yes, and not just children. My own family who labeled me Mr. Encyclopedia. People used to come visit my parents, so I would dutifully come out of my room, say hello, then go back to my room to read. My sister once insisted that if the house were on fire, I wouldn’t notice because I was so busy reading. This was not true; the power would probably go off, and I would have noticed that.
Whereas the kids in school, some of whom I still know, seemed to have valued the written word.
What’s the last thing you stayed up half the night reading because it was so good you couldn’t put it down?
It’s been decades; I don’t remember.
BTW, it’s Banned Book Week; here’s what’s happening in Albany on Saturday, October 6, with a link to events nationwide.