I am out-of-control. My library card is like my maxed Visa (except no one’s taken away the library card yet). Today I had some books to return from my last trip—and still a bunch more to read at home—and yet I could not leave the building without browsing for more. Who knew what would be in the “New” shelves, shiny spine out just waiting for me to find it?
So I started cruising. I hit the A’s. Slow, pacing, marking my territory. The D’s had me down on the floor. The F’s, over to the next shelf. By the S’s I was cradling my finds tightly against my chest, and at the very last book (a Y) I knew I wasn’t done yet. I left the “New” shelves for the general fiction section. My eyes roved the spines, my fingers touching sometimes, pulling out a pretty number. I’d devour a paragraph, swallow a whole page. Many of the books I recognized by the color and type design on the spine. I’d had them already. Sometimes I wanted them again. I don’t have time to read all these books…what is wrong with me?
It was with great restraint that I left the building with just four new titles: Compression Scars, The Knife Thrower, The First Hurt, and This Book Will Save Your Life. I could have taken a whole shelf, had I brought a cart.