|I found this picture online. Somebody's great collection!|
I was listening to a Beatles CD as I walked briskly to the library. Paul McCartney was singing: " I want to be a paperback..." and I anticipated the next word as "reader." But the next word, of course, is "writer." And the song is "Paperback Writer."
My excuse for the slip-up is that I had not heard the song in years. Comical that I misremembered the whole concept, but perhaps it is because I love my role as a paperback reader - too much.
"Paperback reader" is not my only musical misdemeanor. I referred to a favorite Simon and Garfunkel song as "Kathy." You know it: the persona of the song and his girlfriend Kathy are riding on a Greyhound bus "looking for America." ("'Kathy,' I said as we boarded a Greyhound in Pittsburgh, 'Michigan seems like a dream to me now.'" To me, too. ) The song is called "America."
Music is not my forte, but I admire friends who play in a community orchestra and/or local rock band. Go to any poetry reading and you'll see my friend Janet lugging her cello down the aisle after a rehearsal of her string quartet. How delightful to top off music with a poetry reading.
My talents lie elsewhere. Reading paperbacks is one of my occupations (and I think I'll list it as my occupation on the tax form next year). I could spend hours and hours browsing in the paperback sections of bookstores. And I have. I prefer paperbacks to hardcovers: they make the best reading copies, one can scribble notes in the margins without worry, and who cares if the cover gets bent between the gym shoes and laptop in the totebag?
I have multiple paperback copies of my favorite classics. Should I keep the Maude translation in the Oxford edition of War and Peace, or the Anthony Briggs in the Penguin? Should I keep the Modern Library edition of Villette or the Vintage? I can't decide. I spent Sunday reorganizing a bookcase, and the best I could do was put the extras in a box.
Alas, some paperbacks do fall apart. My old Penguin of Pamela Hansford Johnson's Cork Street, Next to the Hatter's (1968), is at this point very, very fragile. There are still a few reads left, I think. I doubt it is in print. And the thin pages of my lovely used Norton edition of Anna Karenina grew so brittle and rumpled that I had to replace it. But Mr. Nemo does not replace any of his old books. He reads his old paperbacks without caring at all about the wear and tear.
Here is my question: Are you a paperback reader or a hardcover reader? Or an e-reader?
I am a real book reader. I don't care whether it's a paperback or hardback. I admit I like a beautiful book, a well-made one with an attractive cover so I wouldn't care for your set of books as pictured from the POV of how they look. What's inside is another matter. EllenReplyDelete
Some of my books do look "well-read," others are "gently read." But I agree with you entirely about liking beautiful books. I love a beautiful cover.Delete
I prefer paperbacks by far, but I never write in them. I’ve got a thing for Penguin editions, and am often picky about what edition I read of a book since for me the feel and look and even typeface are per of the experience. Just read To the Lighthouse in a nice old Harcourt Brace edition, and have a UK Penguin edition of The Waves coming in the mail. Penguin is my first choice — great covers, often nice introductions, good typeface. I have several different copies of Tess of the d’Urbervilles in Penguin editions from different years.ReplyDelete
I agree about Penguins. I am beside myself that I misplaced a "Penguin Orange Collection" copy of Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club. "Penguin oramge" is a newish collection of retro-orange Penguin editions of American classics.Delete
P.S. Michigan seems like a dream to me now… isn’t that “America?”ReplyDelete
It took me four days to hitchhike from Saginaw….
(Not sure why my photo and avatar name showed up under a name I used a long time ago….. this is Will, posted here a few times before)
And yes, see that calling it “Kathy” is a musical misdemeanor…. My niece misheard some song lyrics and went around singing “I’ve got bills to pay and mice to feed” and now I just song that all the time!Delete
Yes, it is "America.' And I meant to mention the name of the song, so thank you. I'd best go back...Delete
"Mice to feed" is fantastic!
As for the avatar and name - I know not how these are stored. At least you don't have a typo in Peter Saucer! I once had a typo in my avatar name.Delete
anything altho i have a small but treasured collection of Penguins. i'm tempted to mention my occasional fascination with cereal box ingredients, but i won't, lol...ReplyDelete
Perhaps tomorrow I'll read cereal ingredients. :)Delete