Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Hi, My Name Is Marie, And I've Been Addicted To Books For 31 Years

So many, yet, not enough. 
   Okay, if you have been reading my blog posts, you know that I have a serious addiction to the written word. I don't know if you could really compare that addiction to drugs, like my title implies, but this is an addiction. Not a harmful one, but an addiction nonetheless. I see a book that I haven't read, that I want to read, and I am affected physically. My heart starts pounding, I can hear the blood rushing in my ears, my skin gets warm, I tingle...... Okay, that sounds funky, but all the same, it happens. I NEED that book. More than I need food or sleep; my need to read surpassed even my need to game. In fact, my love of gaming started because the stories I found in video games could be every bit as involved and detailed as a story in a book. Final Fantasy VII and Xenogears (gears, NOT saga) pulled me in as deeply as any book ever did, and the main reason that I have those games still is for the stories, not the actual gameplay (although I like that too).
   So when I say that I am addicted to books, I mean I am addicted. I can't stop. Getting them from the library is not good enough. I mean, that will momentarily cure the itch, but I am not just a reader, I am a re-reader. Meaning that if I like something, I will read that something over and over and over again. And I am a fast reader. I finish most books within a day or two. I finished The Fellowship of The Ring in one day. (Incidentally, that is the first book I ever read my daughter. When she was older and cared what she was listening to, I read her Brown Bear, Brown Bear, but I avoided that stuff as long as possible. A newborn only cares that she/he can hear the sound of your voice and feel skin-on-skin contact. She/he doesn't care what silly old Frodo is up to.) So I can read a large quantity of books in a small amount of time. Which is really freaking expensive. My savings account is always in danger of being raided for book money. I know that I shouldn't.......but I have too. I NEED that books. My sweaty palms are burning.
Hazel and Fiver always make me feel better. 
   And books; they comfort me. Watership Down is my comfort book. Whenever I feel too upset to handle things, I go visit Hazel and Fiver. Those are two good old friends that have given the the respite needed in order to regroup and get a handle on problems. Feeling like there is no such thing as romance? Read Pride and Prejudice. Can't stomach the classics? Then read the manga Fruits Basket. You'll believe in love again. Sounds corny, but I rely on these stories. Sure, they are make-believe, but a person made them up, and that encourages my belief in people. We can think up such amazing things, and that makes me happy. So books are also my rock, in a way. No, they don't solve my problems, but they give my nerves a rest, which enables me to think more clearly and more rationally, which in turn enables me to tackle a problem with better clarity and stronger resolve.
My happy little space saver. 
   But really, I need to leave my savings account alone. So I write this blog post with a little bit of frustration at myself, because now I owe my savings a hundred bucks. And that was a cheap book shop, but that darn Amazon, that canny online store had a complete set of a manga series that I have been looking to pick up, and they had the originally priced $140 set for $82 (I took out $100 because I wasn't sure about tax. I suck at math.) That is over fifty dollars off! And if I had bought the books singly, they sell for $9.99, and there are eighteen in the series, so that's $180, so I saved myself a hundred bucks buying them like this. At least, that's what I tell myself. But if I hadn't bought them, I'd still have my hundred bucks in my savings, and not feeding Amazon's profit margin. *sigh* You can't win for losing, and I have lost to this addiction. In truth, I don't want to cure my book addiction at all. I know a ton of people who don't read at all, and I can't fathom not reading. What do you people do?!?! Don't say get out, because I get out too. I go to work and go to the movies and go to the mall and go hiking on Mount Rainier and go away on vacation and do family things with my daughter, but there are still a lot of minutes in life that are filled with not doing any of these things. What do you do in those minutes? Minutes that add up to hours that add up to days. What do you do? I don't understand.

These bookcases where an apartment-warming gift from my grandpa and his wife. Thanks!!!!

*** This is where I add a little note saying that I mean no disrespect to those fighting real addictions. You are all so strong and brave in facing your inner demons. I would never make fun of someone facing that; this was me making fun of myself, because I know that I am ridiculous about books.

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