To Kindle is divine (tf)

Summer grinds on. The heat seems unrelenting. I’m hunkered in the bunker, trying to wait it out. When the sun goes down I might chance a trip to the porch, but to do so beforehand is madness.

And it’s only mid-July. We’ve got 6 more weeks of this wretched global-warm to go.

Thankfully, I’ve broken down and gotten myself a Kindle. Now I can read endlessly without toting 1000 pounds of paper from room to room (I prefer reading multiple books at once….the more serious stuff in the basement….lighthearted fare on the first floor) and car to car. All it asks for in return is bankrupting me one “1 click” credit card transaction at a time. A small price to pay methinks for an endless smorgasbord of words magically beamed to a device smaller and less hefty than a legal pad.

One click and it’s there. It’s like something out of the Star Trek transporter room. And with speed comes the illusion that it’s, you know….free.

Of course it’s not….and the credit card statement will soon arrive with crazed, fiendish numbers on it, but I can put that out of my mind quite easily. It’s always been one of my gifts.

I read like other people breathe. History and memoirs mostly. If I have to go somewhere…anywhere…..I’ll take a book in case any free time whatsoever presents itself. I’ve gotten serious reading done in traffic jams and waiting for my kids outside their school and when I should be sleeping but can’t sleep. I once read 200 pages in a doctor’s waiting room, which is both a pathetic commentary on our health care system and a heartfelt homage to author David McCullough, who made me wish the doctor would keep me waiting just a bit longer so I could finish the chapter I was on. I read when listening to music, and I listen to music when I read. I also read when I’m watching TV which is not as hard as it sounds when you consider how insipid most TV is. When I go on vacation and the family is all in one hotel room I read sitting on the floor in the bathroom so the light doesn’t wake anybody. I read on airplanes unless I’m sitting next to one of those irritating trolls who insists on telling me his life story between Scranton and Detroit and won’t even take the hint of inserted Ipod ear-buds. Such people should be flogged by air-marshals.

Jeez, where did that come from? No matter.

I despise the beach largely because I can’t read while I’m there, being too busy making sure my kids don’t drown.

But back to this Kindle thing. It’s not going to make me stop hating the beach, but it still leaves me gobsmacked. I marvel at the ingenuity of man….with his sneaky-as-shit ability to make us think we need something we don’t really need. But now that I have it, I can’t imagine doing without it, which might make me a pathetic, amendable, witless consumer, but at least I’m a pathetic, amendable, witless consumer with a really cool Kindle and a credit card that hasn’t been canceled yet. Which should do for now at least.

This is all Stevens’s fault of course. That relentless, hectoring swine. He snickered at my old-fashioned 600 page books while he held his e-reader aloft with 2 un-calloused fingers, mocking me and calling me a “hopeless Luddite with a bad attitude”. When my house gets repossessed I shall move my family into a tent in his backyard and we’ll all eat the food from his garden. I should get plenty of reading done as well.

–Tom Flannery

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~ by admin on July 13, 2011.

One Response to “To Kindle is divine (tf)”

  1. Currently reading David McCullough’s “The Greater Journey” on my iPad, which can handle Kindle & Nook formats. The book is a fascinating treatise on Americans in Paris during the 19th century. There are many things I like about reading on the iPad, not the least of which is that you can play iTunes while you are reading. I have fallen into the habit of going out on my front stoop at night in near-total darkness and reading for an hour or so.

    The only thing that I DON’T like about reading on the iPad is that I fear for the future of books. I have always been a book buyer, but this experience is SO good that I can imagine my conventional book purchases will whither under the changing technology.

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