As inconsistent as I am with blogging, I have always tried to make it a point to write about the books that I have read during the year before 00:00 of 01/01/xx. Easily misconstrued as being anal, it’s actually, quite simply, a dilemma of principle. I want the date stamp on my posts to reflect the actual date that I actually wrote them. Same reason I don’t schedule my posts.
In the grand scheme of life, nobody really gives a flying f%ck — with the publish date or this blog itself — but I do. It bothers me.
And so now I am left with a big problem: Should I backdate this shit so it would turn up within the 2019 category in the archive? Or do I let it be and stay up all night tossing and turning, wondering if I had made the right decision?
The thing is, with everything that has happened lately, I already have too much eyebags than I could stand.
Backdate, it is!
For the record, I am proud to say that I read thirteen books this year. (I’ll pretend it’s still 2019.)
I mean, wow! 60 more to go annually and I’m going to make Stephen King proud!
Looking back, it wasn’t that I had a lot of time on my hands. But since my dad’s cancer diagnosis early this year, I felt lost. I needed answers to all the existential questions burning in my brain. The books that drew me in were obviously those that somehow offered to shed some light to my internal anguish — those in the second collage, plus Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, because sometimes a cat knows more than humans ever could.
The books on the first collage were merely entertainment. Well, sort of. Because I sure as hell wasn’t “entertained” learning about serial killers and pedophiles that the FBI deal with on a daily basis. If anything, Journey Into Darkness made me paranoid. Which is good because I have a misplaced trust on humanity. So now, not only do I scan my surroundings, I look at men and wonder if they they have dead bodies stacked in their fridge or something. Or if they’re the type to.
Of all these books, Manage Your Money Like A F*cking Grown-Up was the only one I borrowed. From the library. Where I was fined $5 for not returning it on time. Which I have yet to settle. The irony of ironies. But it’s a really good “money” book, I’ll give it that. I mean, I learned a lot from it. Namely, that the way my finances are going right now, it would take me about ten rebirths before I reach my goal of having $10,000,000 sitting in the bank.
If I have to pick one book to call my favorite, it would be a tie between When Breath Becomes Air and The Painted Drum — books that I had to buy brand new because I couldn’t rely too much on fate to immediately grant me those books when I find myself at the op shops. The former was about cancer. The latter was about grief.
Two of the major keywords that would describe my 2019.
Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won’t either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself you tasted as many as you could. –Louise Erdrich, The Painted Drum