Somewhere along the line after I became a Grown Up, I stopped going to the library and decided I had to buy books that I wanted to read. I’m not sure when this happened. I was always library-girl in grade school. My first part-time job was in the public library.
In fact, I decided that the public library had gone the way of the dinosaur, because it had in many towns I lived in as an adult. Or you couldn’t find anything there worth checking out. Or if you did, it sat on your desk until its due-date and you had to take it back unread.
Plus, I decided that if I was going to go to the trouble of reading a book, I wanted to have it on my shelf like a trophy for All To See. “See, I read this.” Problem is, I got books on my shelf that I bought and then never read. Most of them are gone now, I sold them for a quarter of the price I bought them for when I realized I’d never read them.
So all this talk of Harry Potter and other book recommendations on the board and here in LJ land got me itching to read. That, and I have NOTHING on my shelves anymore that I haven’t read or actually really intend to read. It makes riding the bus abysmally dull. But I go to amazon.com and hesitate to put anything into my shopping cart; after all, what if I buy this and don’t read it, too? Or what if I buy it and don’t like it?
Honestly, when did I cave in to the international capitalist conspiracy to make me part with my hard-earned money? Hey, you corporate suck-pigs, it’s mine and you can’t have it!!
So yesterday I snuck out of work early and went to get myself a library card. They do have functioning public libraries in San Francisco. Makes sense; this is the last bastion of liberalism-isn’t-a-dirty-word in the United States. Or perhaps the last bastion of home-grown socialism. Pass the bean sprouts while I tighten the straps on my faded Birkenstocks.
I didn’t actually find any books at the library yesterday. By the time I got my card, the library was closing. They can’t have decent hours anymore because everybody else in this country doesn’t want to give their money to the government. Well, maybe for bombs, but not for books.
Well, fuck ’em all, this is the age of the internet, and I just spend a glorious hour in the on-line catalog for the library seeing what they had in science fiction and fantasy and gay and lesbian fiction. Yee haw! Books, books, books. I’ve noticed, however, that everything that interests me is in the “Teen Center”. OK, so my idea of entertainment shows that I am permanently stuck in adolescence because I never really had one. I was a big fat no-life nerd in High School. OK, not fat. Why do you think “Buffy” interested me when it first came out?
So now I have my library card and a list of books to locate before I go on vacation. Is it horribly risky to take library books with you on a plane to another state? ‘Cause I’m thinking of hauling my netflix DVDs there, too.
This netflix thing is also big fun. I do feel guilty about not patronizing my corner Mom-and-Pop video store. But for $3.80 for every rental, it was bleeding me dry! I figure with netflix, I have to rent 5 movies a month to make it as expensive as the corner store, but through the magic of DVD, I am discovering TV shows I’m too cheap, er, I mean frugal to spring for digital cable to see: Queer as Folk, Six Feet Under, Oz. I’m catching up on shows I don’t get around to watching on cable because they come on every friggin’ day and they never are at episode 1 season 1 when you need them to be: Dark Shadows, Babylon 5. Ooh, and reliving Space: 1999!
So this is fun. And when I get a life in the Real World, I’ll be sure to let you know.