Drowning in Books

Stop Lending Books to Me, I Beg You

I’m constantly borrowing books. From friends, boyfriends, family of friends, no one’s safe. I’ve borrowed two different books from the dude I’m seeing since we started seeing each other, A Day in the Life of a Smiling Woman and Contact, and I’ve started neither.

 

Imagine my childhood bedroom. Don’t be creepy about it, but imagine. One entire wall was comprised of bookshelves, full bookshelves, and they were well used and well loved. As I’ve gotten older, the frequency with which I read has deteriorated, but my passion lives strong. 

 

Take, for example, my current line-up of borrowed books. A Day in the Life of a Smiling Woman spoke to me. Why? Well, for those people who know me but don’t know my name, I’m often referred to as “the one with the smile”. My mother would be so proud, she spent so much money on my orthodontia. I’m sure many women can see why I was intrigued: as women, smiling is somehow extraordinarily controversial. 

 

As a woman with a particular penchant for grinning, smiling, laughing, joking, etc. etc. blah blah blah, being told to smile is equivalent to when you’re about to begin cleaning whatever and your mom/significant other/roommates start harping on you to do it. If I’m not smiling, there’s a reason. Maybe I’ve had a particularly shit day, maybe I’ve spilled freshly brewed coffee on myself (RIP to my right leg, as of Tuesday, May 15th). I don’t think I need to continue: if you’re a woman, you get it. If you’re a man, you should understand how annoying nagging women to smile is. 

 

 

Anyway.

 

The second of the most recent books I’ve borrowed and not yet opened is Contact. Contact is one of my favorite movies. How can you go wrong with Jodie Foster, Matthew McConaughey, James Woods, Tom Skerritt, William Fichtner, John Hurt, Angela Bassett, Rob Lowe, Jake Busey, and David Morse? Hint: you can’t. 

 

Contact is not only one of the best movies around (7.4 on IMDB, 65% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes), but it’s also based on a book. A very famous book, Contact by Carl Sagan, which I’ve never actually read.

 

So I’m at my dude’s place and he’s just moved into a new apartment and all his books are everywhere. On top of the pile, with a crisp white cover featuring Foster and McConaughey, lay this book. I grabbed it, put it in my purse, and go “Hey Mike, I’m going to borrow another book, that Gucci?”

 

It was Gucci.

 

So here I am, five days after borrowing the second book, still haven’t opened it. And honestly, it’s probably under a pile of clothes on my floor, because I’m messy and have had too many plans to actually clean my room this week.

 

It’s ghastly, I know, but it gets worse. There are four more borrowed books ahead of these in my To Read pile. Which is a separate pile from my Bought But Haven’t Read Yet pile, which is also a separate pile from the Have Read Too Many Times But Will Read Again Before I Start Something I Haven’t Read Before pile.

 

Please, stop lending books to me. I beg you. Save me from myself. 

 

Featured Image via Canadian Business.