Saturday, June 25, 2005

I've been book-tagged...

Okay, Devona, I'll take up your challenge. But I must say this is going to be a rather embarrassing post. I'm going to be referring back and forth to your post to answer to the different sections of this tag. Ready? (No!) Oh, sorry. I guess I posted that out loud.

Number of books I own: This is a tricky one, because most of the books I have are text books that I decided to keep after my classes at Wichita State University were over. Other than that, I probably own between 15 and 20 books. (I told you this would be embarrassing.)

Next book to buy: Wow. I haven't really thought about that much, but I guess the next books I'm looking to buy are related to my desire to teach beginning American Sign Language. One is called Religious Sign Language, and that's one that I want to get for myself so I can improve my ability to sign at church. The others are for those who sign up for my class. It's a book called Signing Made Simple.

Currently reading: Well, I can tell you what I read when I want to read and what I'm supposed to be reading. What I read when I want to read is Killed: Great Journalism Too Hot to Print. What I'm supposed to be reading is The Hammer of God for our pastor's summer book club. I have a lot of catching up to do.

Last book I read: I very seldom read a whole book from cover to cover, and if I do, it takes a while. I'm just not much into reading. I'd rather be up and doing something or watching a good TV show or movie. The last book I read all the way through was The Gutenburg Galaxy by Marshall McLuhan. It figures, right? A communication-related book.

I've also been working my way through the articles in Killed. Very intriguing. Even Ron has liked some of them, including a story about an interview that writer Erik Hedegaard had with singer John Mellencamp. It was called "The Lay-Z-Boy Position," and it was killed by Details in 1996. I guess because the story focused a lot on Mellencamp's cigarette addiction, the magazine was afraid that its cigarette advertisers would pull their ads, so they chose not to run the story. I think Ron liked it because every other word Mellancamp used was the f-bomb.

Books that have meant the most to me: The Bible, Luther's Small Catechism, and an assortment of communication-related texts, mostly. That includes the sign language books I have. Afterall, sign language is a form of communication. A very effective one. I find it fascinating. I like Sprituality of the Cross by Gene Edward Veith, although Ron just mostly read it to me while I was putting my makeup on or something.

A book that changed my view of the world: I remember reading A Brave New World in high school. That was truly a scary futuristic view of the world, but slowly, I keep seeing evidence that some of the stuff described in the book is coming true. For instance the test-tube babies and the necessity to carry around protection in case people got frisky... I could go on, but some of the stuff I found just very disturbing.

I also read Sister Carrie, Catcher in the Rye, The Great Gatsby, Huckleberry Finn and others that I can't think of at this moment. I really liked most of the books I read in high school. And I read all of them completely. I would have read more books had I not had an advanced English teacher who didn't like me. I had to transfer out of her class because she wouldn't stop giving me Ds on papers and tests I should have gotten As or Bs on. Because of that, I missed out on Death of a Salesman, the Grapes of Wrath and a few others that I really kind of wanted to read. I guess high school was the time to do my reading because I seemed to enjoy it more then.

Embarrassing: I never really read any books I'd be embarrassed to admit to having read. The embarrassing part for me is the fact that I really don't do much reading unless it's required of me or unless I know I'm going to be stuck in a doctor's office waiting room for a while and the magazines suck. So, I bring a book with me, usually something that has something to do with the media.

My favorite book as a child: Honestly, I don't think I had one. I know that I was excited to learn how to read, but I don't think I ever really had a favorite. Unfortunately, reading wasn't really encouraged when I was growing up. I mean, not that it was banned or looked down upon or anything like that, but I never saw my parents sitting down to read anything, and I guess that's why it never really mattered to me very much.

I'm not getting too specific here, because I really don't do a lot of pleasure reading. In fact, I think it would shock Ron quite a bit if he ever saw me reading a book just for the hell of it. Usually, there has to be a pretty good reason for my book-reading. I do a lot of reading and typing at work. Ron tries to encourage me to read more, but it doesn't seem to have much of an effect on me. I don't know why. Maybe it's because I didn't learn to appreciate it when I was growing up.

But the question is this: How did I end up liking English and journalism so much if I never liked reading as a kid? And further: How am I going to impress upon the kids Ron and I have that reading is important if I can't seem to get into it, myself? That kind of concerns me. I know that whatever kids Ron and I have are going to be smart because they'll inherit our genes and more than likely improve upon what knowledge we impart to them. But we, as their parents, will need to set examples for them to follow. That won't be a problem for Ron: he loves reading. But if they see that I'm not very interested in reading, chances are good they won't be either. I hope that fear doesn't make it to reality.


Farida said...

If you are serious about being a (good) writer, you should be serious about being a reader.

Mrs. T. Swede said...

See, that's what I was trying to say in my post. But how can you get serious about something you don't like? That's like saying I'm going to get serious about eating brussel sprouts because I know they're good for me, even though I can't stand them.

My husband hasn't given up on me.