Some people believe you can never have too many friends. I’ve always held the belief that one can never have too many books. In fact, I will take it a step further and say that you can have too many friends. Why would I ever dare say something so preposterous? Well I have two answers to that…..both are painfully honest….I reckon the one you would get from me would be determined by my level of aggravation that day. If you asked me on a very busy or stressful day of work I would tell you that, yes, you can have too many friends….friends whose sole purpose in life was to keep you from enjoying a peaceful, guilt free night of reading! If you asked me the same question after a day spent far from work, a day spent finishing a great book and then going in search of another book to read, well I would have to tell you that, yes, you can have too many friends….friends that are always begging you to try this book, or that book….friends that are giving 5 star reviews…..friends all too willing to help you buy yet one more book……
Before the internet was so common….before smart phones…..before Amazon (Bezos is out to get me!!!) and its magical kindle…..well, I confess, I still had a problem with books. I had bookshelves full of books. I had books upon books stacked upon flat surfaces in my house….beside my bed on the floor….my kitchen table…..my nightstand…..the backseat of my car…..I confess, even on the back of the commode in the bathroom……I would spend part of each week gathering up all of these books and trying to find hiding places for them all….when I was asked if I got a new book, I would reply with, “this old thing? I’ve had it for ages!”….hey, it’s not like anyone I know would ever realize that the book was a new release just out that day! But life was easier then. I mean, I had to actually go to a store and look at the books. I would have to study their covers. I would have to open them up and read the first paragraph of the description. I would have to be moved enough to actually spend my hard-earned money on an author I had never heard of. Was it worth the risk? I didn’t know many readers…..I was far better off sticking with those authors I knew and loved….I was able to somewhat control my addiction……
Then my entire world changed….around this time I thought Facebook was just a wasteland of worthless posts that you signed on once a week and looked around for 15 minutes and logged out. At this same time, I thought Amazon was a great way for me to order my books without having to go and find a store close by that had the new book I wanted….sometimes finding a book was tough where I lived.
Then two life changing events happened…..it was late in the year 2010…the first thing that happened is I caved and bought a kindle….Bezos with his evil plot to take over the entire world finally convinced me to come over to the dark side….in doing so, I was inspired to type in KINDLE in the search engine of Facebook…..OH MY GREAT GOODNESS!!!!! What do you mean they have entire pages dedicated to kindle and eBooks? What do you mean there are other people in the world that would rather read on a Friday night then go out and get pissed? What do you mean that other people love books as much as me? How is this possible? I am a grown woman who has met thousands of people in this life and I thought I was the only one!!!!! Have I suddenly been transported into a parallel universe or something?
<conversation with myself> okay….chill! calm yourself! let’s adjust to all of this….let’s learn to accept all of this….okay….this is a good thing….NO! a great thing!!!! I now have book friends! For the first time in my life, people “get me”…..How awesome is this! Oh my! Look, they are offering suggestions! Oh my! look how helpful they are! They even provide me links that take me directly to the book! Oh my! I LOOOOVEEEE my new friends…..I would have never tried this book if they hadn’t told me about this great new author….oh wow! This author doesn’t just have this one book out, they have an entire series!!!! My new book friends are amazing…..How did I ever live before I met them all? I am the luckiest bibliophile on the planet!!! And seriously….look how easy it is to hide how many books I have! Not one single person has asked me if that’s a new book I am reading!!!! Well, except my new book friends, but it’s almost like bragging! They actually get excited for me…not a single one has rolled their eyes wondering why I just bought that new book when I have so many to read
fast forward 6 months
<yet another conversation with myself> hmmmmm…..now that I have over 500 books on my kindle (I love you, Bezos, you’re not evil at all….let me help you take over the world, I want to tell everyone how much I love my kindle!!!!) perhaps I am confident enough to let go of some of my hard covers…..oh, but I love them all so much….first let me make sure I have purchased the kindle copy….one day I might run out of books to read and want to revisit this old favorite…besides, I am giving them to people who need books….I am being charitable…I deserve some new books, since I am being so generous…hmmmmmm…..all of my new friends are great, but they keep telling me about new books….perhaps they need to step away from the computer for a while….it would be nice if they actually READ their TBR list before they added to mine…or even worse….made fun of mine….who cares how many books I have….it’s not like they are taking up room in my house…..and besides, my buddy Bezos stores them in the magical cloud for FREE!!!! Free!!!! Can you believe that? And hey, it was hard work to get track down this many great books to read!!!!
fast forward again
<conversation with family members> I don’t care if I asked for an Amazon Gift Card last year for my birthday….it’s what I want….no, I don’t want a stupid set of pajamas. I want a GC…..I’m sorry if you think a GC isn’t personal enough…personally I’ve had no use out of a single present you have ever given to me EXCEPT for the GC from last year….for now on don’t send me anything BUT GCs…..I need a few more books to read…..don’t roll your eyes at me like that!!!!!!!!!!!
fast forward one year
<yes, yet another conversation with myself> oh look! One of my great friends just told me about a website where I can track all of my books…..I must go check it out!!!! Holy Hell, this GOODREADS is freaking awesome sauce! I love this! I’m going to add all my books in……hmmmmm….I didn’t realize I had purchased this many books…..hmmm…..maybe I need a new kindle to keep track of the books I’ve purchased so I can make sure to get to them first….lots of people have multiple kindles….why should I be stuck with only one when they aren’t limited to just one…..yes, I NEED this other one….It’s so I can track my books better……..OH MY GOSH!!!!! Why in the world did I buy this stupid book? Who recommended this one? I give up! I can’t add all of these books! There’s no flipping way….I need five of me to enter all of these damn books….how is it possible that I have these many books? It just isn’t possible….seriously! I’m going to Amazon right this second and checking my archives…….OH HELL NO!!!!! I DO NOT HAVE 6,000 BOOKS IN MY ARCHIVES…..THIS ISN’T POSSIBLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!
<current conversation with myself> hmmmm….I really should finish this blog post, but my book buddy just told me about this book that just came out….I really need to go check it out….one more book won’t hurt anyone, will it?
Much Love to Each and Every One of my Fellow Book Friends,