So I wrote this self-important angsty tale of my troubled relationship with books and vowed to read less this year.
And so far it has been a success. Me- the queen of self-control.
Yes, there have been withdrawal symptoms. I have been irritable and prone to snap at people. I am also filled with more than the usual ‘where is this life going’ kind of existential thoughts. I avoided all the book sales and all those wonderful offers from Amazon and felt like a sacrificial queen a la Nirupa Roy.
But overall, I stuck to my resolution, more or less, at least as far as the new books were concerned.
I just read 4 new books, all of which turned out to be fairly crappy, which helped me stick to the strict no-new-buys policy.
I re-read all volumes of In Search of Time, which was predictably great.
A fellow reading addict uncle claims that now he will only re-read the books he has truly liked for the rest of his life, since life is too short to be wasted on new experiences. He is not that old, just dramatic.
I already am a re-re-re-reading kind of person. I can re-read my favourite books dozens of times. When I am truly peeling out from boredom, I like to pick up a well-worn volume, sniff the familiar smell and swelter in the anticipation of the familiar.
I also re-read my Film Studies reader. When I first got into cultural studies, I used to lay awake in excitement getting all those ‘aha’ moments one after another. It was like a series of intellectual orgasms, however corny and pseudo it sounds. I felt like I got the key to unlocking the mystery of life, of culture, of society. I realised that the kick is gone now and is replaced by a quiet appreciation of slow unfurling of life’s little moments.
I realised that now I am controlling my addiction, I had got tonnes of time, so I actually met a few people I hadn’t for a while- hurrah. And started thinking about future options.
And started running. Double Hurrah. My ambition is to be able to run consistently for half hr. @ at least 8 km per hour. Like those sinewy muscled gods in tight running clothes and a fierce determination on their face you see running in European cities, no matter whether it is snowing, raining, or baking. Mumbai is not exactly running friendly, I will be run over if I start running in the city. But a trade mill if not a bad option. It is the sign of wisdom that comes with age. Don’t expect beautiful paved cities just so that you start huffing puffing running. Dust your old treadmill, plug in iPod and start.
I started listening to music again. Since husband hates loud noise of whatever variety, I had gradually stopped listening to music, which for me has to be on full volume or none at all. I have no idea why I hadn’t been using the headphones. Now that I am, I behave as if I have invented them. Friends roll their eyes when I gush about merits of Bluetooth enabled headphones as if they are some sort of time machine level of sci-fi achievement. NO WIRES…Hallelujah..Mom.. look.. no wires.
Overall, it has been a good month. I finished my course. Didn’t panic at the thought of ‘what next?’. Controlled an addiction. Got into couple of new things without obsessing or overdoing them.
Yes, I agree that I am soon going to grow horns with all this smug-self-congratulatory spirit.
Not bad at all.