I’m on a fiction binge now: cheap sci-fi and unimpressive murder mysteries. You know, the drill: pleasure without commitment. It’s been this way since August; around my birthday, I grew weary with plowing my way through a beautiful but heavy tome on medicine and disease in ancient Rome, a book on Japanese swordsmanship, and a maritime history of Maine. Eventually, I’ll get sick of fiction and return to pleasant but heavy plowing through non-fiction.
A few years ago, I bought a whole bunch of those Ikea cubes as a storage solution for books stowed in the attic. It was my rather bounteous maritime collection. Need a portrait carved of an obscure Clyde-built freighter? I might have a photo or drawing of it in there. I didn’t buy these books to read them in their entirety. They are for mining. But having them, I felt guilty about storing them, and so there they sit on the front porch.
Now, the maritime collection is hard to ignore. I pass it when I leave the house and enter. It’s like passing a derelict shipmate, looking for a few bucks to go down to the local Blue Anchor to pass the evening…”Hey, mate! Got a bit of spare cash for old John?”
My wife has started wondering why I clutch my wallet and look guilty whenever we return from the store. The collection might return to the attic, where I’ll only hear the occasional creak from the timbers of the old schooners waiting to be carved.