12 March 2009

Book Confessions Meme

Anastasia and Pr. Hall have both posted this meme on their blogs, so I'll be bold and jump into the fray as well. I also like Anastasia's way of tagging not just specific people (I'm one who has missed some of the times I was tagged. Mea culpa!), but everyone who reads. So to quote her: "If you are reading this, you are TAGGED!"

Book Confessions Meme

1. To mark your page you: use a bookmark, bend the page corner, leave the book open face down?
Oh, never bend the page corner! Those little dog ears could fall off, and then the whole book would be useless. Use a bookmark - and that can be just about anything, from a bona fide book mark, with or without a fancy ribbon, to a piece of junk mail sitting idly by. I've been know to fold a Post-it note in half for a quick book mark, but I find those little Post-it flags to be superb book marks. After all, they don't fall out.

2. Do you lend your books?
Only if it's a book I won't mind forgetting that I loaned out, because I will probably do just that (and then I'll just have to go and buy another copy in order for the loaned-out one to come back home).

3. You find an interesting passage: you write in your book or NO WRITING IN BOOKS!
Does highlighting and underlining count as "writing in books"? Of course, you write in a book...if it belongs to you. How else would I be able to go back and find that juicy quote for later use?

4. Dust jackets - leave it on or take it off.
Why mess up the dust jacket when it often looks so nice with good artwork and can cover up the worn and scuffed up cover? :-)

5. Hard cover, paperback, skip it and get the audio book?
Ah, why judge a book by its cover, whether hard or paper? A book's a book and the important thing is what's inside. As for audio books, only with stories/novels that I probably wouldn't take the time to sit down and read (like the Mitford series or John Grisham novels). Audio books are quite nice for those nice long drives (listened to a lot of them in the good ol' Wyoming days).

6. Do you shelve your books by subject, author, or size and color of the book spines?
Mostly by subject and then by author within various subjects. But, honestly, some shelves have become catch alls for quite the mixtures of subjects and authors.

7. Buy it or borrow it from the library later?
Borrow it? Library? I like that quote supposedly from Erasmus: "Whenever I get a little money, I buy books. And if there's any left over, then I buy food and clothes."

8. Do you put your name on your books - scribble your name in the cover, fancy bookplate, or stamp?
Write my name on the first blank page inside the front cover, under the heading "ex libris" and above the date acquired.

9. Most of the books you own are rare and out of print books or recent publications?

10. Page edges - deckled or straight?
I don't mind either kind of page, but for some reason my fingers are never quite sure of what to do with deckled pages. They must be too used to straight pages.

11. How many books do you read at one time?
What does "at one time mean"? :-) I can only open the cover and feast my eyes on the words on the page one book at a time (haven't quite mastered the separate book for each eye routine just yet! :-), but right now I have three theological books, two novels, and one piece of literature, "The Odyssey," all clamoring for my attention. Of course, that's in addition to books like the Bible and devotional volumes that get a little attention each day, but does that really count as "at one time"?

12. Be honest, ever tear a page from a book?
Only from a phone book - and even then something didn't seem quite right with the universe. :-)


Jenn said...

Like this one, would post to my own blog but I'd be copying your answers mostly! ;)

saxoniae said...

My Mom used to take off the dust covers whenever she loaned out her books. Of course, she would forget to whom she had loaned it.

anselm1109 said...

I find this meme to be at once humorous and disturbing. In the first place, it is a delightful bit of fun, and it is certainly healthy to laugh at ourselves and our habits.

On the other hand, I’m a bit nervous by my, and my friends, near idol worship of printed matter. I know someone who refuses to write in the margins of her books, let alone dog ear them, because she is afraid she may have to “confess” to some sort of sin. Somehow, the mere act of printing something makes it sacred. It must be a touch of pride which makes us worry about the physical body of the book. As if we demonstrate our intelligence by the way we handle the holy things.

I would rather be a true “book worm”. Someone who consumes books and makes them a part of me. This leaves little room for being gentle with the book. Mark the heck out of it, dog ear it, yank out pages and tape them up on your mirror. use it, LOVE it. (Not that I do this of course, but I aspire to it!) It is not the physical container that matters, that is merely a transmission device between the author’s mind and mine. The ideal would be to so thoroughly digest those thoughts that the vehicle becomes obsolete.

Early in my undergraduate work I received some excellent advice: “The art of reading is learning to read slowly.” I have endeavored to live by this advice ever since. Of course this means that I have read far fewer books than many of my friends, but I have certainly not read less.

Just as a book should not be judged by its cover, so a man should not be judged by his books. it is not how he handles the books that matter, it is what the man does with their ideas.