The bookstore is one place where I would make no excuses for my introversion. Heck, I’ve thought it through – I could afford to lose my girlfriend (had I one) in Borders for a few hours because
1) books are worthy companions (this is a topic reserved for another post, but let’s just say that with books, you can be sure you’re always the one doing the dumping)
2) I don’t think I could date someone who didn’t have a taste in books independent of my own
I’ve been to Borders twice in four days now and new titles assail me from all angles – “BECOME A MILLIONAIRE IN A YEAR OR, uh, UR MONEY BACK”, “MEN IN WHITE: TOP SEKRIT EXPOSEZXZX”, “DAN BROWN’S LATEST BOOK – EXACTLY LIKE THE PREVIOUS FOUR BOOKS EXCEPT WITH SLIGHTLY AMENDED SEX SCENES”: it’s like junk mail minus the viagra. Covers have never been more outrageous – being technicolored is the norm. And I love it. I love the feeling of being torn because there’s an infinite store of tantalising books and only so much money to buy them with. It’s ironically enough a feeling of excess, knowing that the finiteness of good literature is cushioned by the finiteness of time and cash.
I love smelling new leaves of a book so that is where the library fails me. Libraries smell of ethnic minorities and computers and dusty moths. I like thumbing through books and examining the fonts, the rough distribution of pictures, the quality and colour of the page, the matte book jackets etc.
I love it when the hymen of the paperback is smooth to the touch and unbreached because we all know it’s all over when someone bloody violates it in a million places, like they do to the whores at NLB, all tattered and catalogued and numbered.
So I guess the only thing I don’t love is the brusque restiveness with books I find myself increasingly guilty of. Forget about the words, forget about the magic of the climax and the universality of the heroes, tell me what I need to know in 100 words or less and I wouldn’t be missing anything.