Notes on Enjoyment

It was sometime in the evening Thursday night, just as the noises of the toads gathering outside my window began to emerge, that I couldn’t help but shatter. On my nightstand next to me books I hadn’t even begun reading: Plato, Lucretius, Shelley, Kant, and so on. A little earlier in the month I created a chart of all the books I was going to read this year, a whole product line of philosophy from Spinoza all the way up until Wittgenstein and Zizek, only stopping along the way for some light reading of Adam Smith, Ricardo, Marx, Malthus, and Keynes, and the whole nine yards of economics to go along with it. In fact, in the moment I was reading a book on the history of economic theory, only about halfway through, when I took the bookmark out closed the book and put it back on the shelf. I don’t plan to return to it.

I shredded the reading schedule I made and trashed the bastard in the cans outside my house, I don’t think I’ll need it. There is a sudden moment people are faced with when they come to terms with their own boredom that they can’t help but laugh. I made the grave mistake of aspiring to be some kind of academic, and therefore thinking that one should only shroud himself with the most sophisticated and mind fucking texts to make himself feel smarter, so that’s exactly what I tried to do. A person can only take some much time reading about history, god, and everything inbetween before going bonkers and running through downtown nude. 

So I ditched the economics book and found something else. I had forgotten the love I used to harvest for the late Hunter S. Thompson, hell I even wrote a high-school English paper on him. Even then I wanted something new, so I ended up choosing the more obscure work of his The Curse of Lono, which for what it was turned out to be pretty entertaining. Just the beginning section, when Hunter writes a letter to his illustrator Ralph Steadman discussing the Honolulu Marathon and their subsequent trip to Hawaii:

 

We are both entered in this event, Ralph, and I feel pretty confident about winning. We will need a bit of training, but not much.

The main thing will be to run as an entry and set a killer pace for the first three miles. These body-nazis have been training all year for the supreme effort in this Super Bowl of marathons. The promoters expect 10,000 entrants, and the course is 26 miles; which means they will all start slow . . . because 26 miles is a hell of a long way to run, for any reason at all, and all the pros in this field will start slow and pace themselves very carefully for the first 20 miles.

But not us, Ralph. We will come out of the blocks like human torpedoes and alter the whole nature of the race by sprinting the first three miles shoulder-to-shoulder in under 10 minutes.

A pace like that will crack their nuts, Ralph. These people are into running, not racing-our strategy will be to race like whorehounds for the first three miles. I figure we can crank ourselves up to a level of frenzy that will clock about 9:55 at the three-mile checkpoint… which will put us so far ahead of the field that they won’t even be able to see us. We will be over the hill and all alone when we hit the stretch along Ala Moana Boulevard still running shoulder-to-shoulder at a pace so fast and crazy that not even the judges will feel sane about it. . . and the rest of the field will be left so far behind that many will be overcome with blind rage and confusion.

I’ve also entered you in the Pipeline Masters, a world class surfing contest on the north shore of Oahu on Dec. 26.

You will need some work on your high-speed balance for this one, Ralph. You’ll be shot through the curl at speeds up to 50 or even 75 miles an hour, and you won’t want to fall.

I won’t be with you in the Pipeline gig, due to serious objections raised by my attorney with regard to the urine test and other legal ramifications.

But I will enter the infamous Listen Memorial Rooster Fight, at $1,000 per unit on the universal scalee.g., one minute in the cage with one rooster wins $1,000 . .. or five minutes with one rooster is worth $5,000 .. . and two minutes with five roosters is $10,000 … etc.

This is serious business, Ralph. These Hawaiian slashing roosters can tear a man to shreds in a matter of seconds, I am training here at home with the peacockssix 40-pound birds in a 6′ x 6′ cage, and I think I’m getting the hang of it.

It felt weird to be able to genuinely laugh at a piece of writing, especially when I had become so accustomed to reading next to an open window so I wouldn’t fall asleep from it. I read through the whole book in about two days and I plan to move on to something else that is just as entertaining. But I gained something else from it I wasn’t quite expecting: a sense of enjoyment.

So long had I been bored of art, of expression, of life that I convinced myself there wasn’t anything besides this. This was even reflected in my music choices. My most carefree days of high school were marked by my continual listening to every Rolling Stones album almost religiously, and say what you will about the Stones, but they are much more lively than the downtrodden Radiohead I’ve consumed myself with these last few months. It all came back to me how much I enjoyed their music, despite all the half-ass songwriting and the occasional sloppy guitar work. I believe that, at least in part, it stems from how much mental activity is actually present when listening to each. To further compare the Stones and Radiohead, take the entire Stone’s album Exile on Main Street and contrast it with Radiohead’s Kid A. The Stones laid out the basic how-to manual for blues rock music in summation for all later artists. There’s nothing deep and introspective on the album besides the occasional slower song. Now think back again to Kid A. Songs like Optimistic, How to Disappear, and Motion Picture Soundtrack is not exactly considered easy listening

HST
Hunter S. Thompson, the famous Gonzo journalist, inspired a generation of free spirits and sporadic actions.

by most people. It’s the songs you listen to when considering the boredom of life, which doesn’t really help in any way.

If I’m going to go on a tangent about the effects of music on a person, I might was well keep talking about exciting music. Perhaps one of my favorite albums of all time is Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here album, mostly because when listening through the entire thing it plays like a dream, the whole album sounds like a single song. In fact I might rate the entirety of the album’s staplepiece song Shine On You Crazy Diamond– parts 1 to 9- as one of the best compositions in the 20th century. Furthermore, it is so dreamlike that I actually use it to fall asleep to. It is that surreal. And while it does have some intense parts (specifically the slide solo in part 6 of Shine On You Crazy Diamond) I realized while driving to work that it’s a pretty awful album to listen to on a drive. I wanted something more exciting. Another example is that for a while I had been a big MCR fan, and so logically I didn’t like the last album they put out before breaking up. It was so bright and cheery and a total rejection of everything else they did. It was carefree and high spirits and so I hated it. But it wasn’t until now that I began to appreciate it for that very reason, and I believe other fans will come to that feeling as well. Their entire discography up until then was focused on death and suffering, and it is only fitting that their last album be an anthem for life and enjoyment.

Related: My Chemical Romance- Vampire Money

So what exactly am I trying to get at? If I have to sum it up, it comes down to this: don’t surround yourself in boredom and misery, things are never as serious as you think they are. Drive a little faster, play your music a little louder, love a little brighter and read a little happier. Now, will I eventually come back to that reading list I created? Yes, in fact I still intend to read every book on that list. But, do I intend to read them all this year? God no. I am still very young, and life is excruciating long. Moreso than I had hoped. I will get to them all. If not this year, then the next or perhaps the year after next. But as of right now I’m busy listening to the rain and wondering when the toads will clear outside my window.

 

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49 thoughts on “Notes on Enjoyment

  1. Great description of Wish You Were Here. The age of the concept-record are long gone. Rather sad because, like you, I have so many vivid memories of the first experience with an Album or CD especially all the way through. Floyd are album masters with Animals, Dark Side and even Waters’ ultra personal Final Cut.
    But Wish You Were Here is perfectly described as a dream. If I only had a dollar for every time that one accompanied my nightly slumber on repeat.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I hope you get back to reading those books. Not easy reading, I admit. But it is not about becoming an intellectual or an academic. I hope you read because you are interested in the subjects. If you feel that it is going to leave you confused when you have been exposed to so many contrary theories, then you are not being immature or shallow. The best of us are often overwhelmed by the jargon, the contradictions and the complexities.
    Or, you can try to make it a little more entertaining 🙂 May I suggest The Story of Philosophy by Will Durant? Beautiful language, abbreviated biographies of those philosophers and their philosophies in teaspoons full of sugar which makes the medicine go down 😀 Try it, if you haven’t already..

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    • I heartily second the recommendation of “The Story of Philosophy” by Will Durant. I’ve re-read that one several times. It is so well written you will enjoy it immensely & regret it’s ending.
      Just look at his life’s work… The Story of Civilization: an 11-Volume masterpiece and you see where Dr. Durant gets his endless pool of knowledge. What an achievement! He writes so well, all 11 Volumes are a joy.

      Liked by 2 people

        • Ariel…an integral partner. They shared authorship of the last several volumes. He even refers to their daughter, whose name escapes me now, as a research assistant. If you haven’t yet, “Fallen Leaves” is a short but fantastic read that consists of Dr. Durrant’s own insightful thoughts. Great read with a heartbreaking and heartwarming story of their end together. We should all be so lucky.
          You are so right. The language & style is indeed so beautiful it seems the words just flow by like a meandering stream. The Renaissance, The Age of Reason Begins, The Age of Voltaire, The Age of Napoleon, The Life of Greece. Not many can make history that compelling. Given me Herculean effort and such prolific output of the highest quality scholarship in beautiful narrative form, he/they are probably my favorite non-fiction author(s).

          You have impeccable taste, my friend. You are very welcome. I eagerly log forward to following your blog.

          Liked by 2 people

          • Thank you, yes I agree with you… even the sections are titled so logically and make perfect sense in the order they are read. Impeccable taste, not so sure of that, my dear friend.. because my taste can be eclectic and range from the asinine to the philosophical 🙂 But, thank you for your kind words.. Good to meet you too.

            Liked by 1 person

    • Will Durant really writes more a history of the few philosophers in his tome, making their lives more accessible rather than discuss their particular force of argument. The book is a good introduction for those without previous contact in philosophy as it provides basis for what the study of philosophy is generally about. I would recommend two better sources for the more serious reader. The first is Bertrand Russel’s A History of Western Philosophy and History of Philosophy by Julian Marias. The latter being a bit more extensive in its analysis and treatment of the various schools of thought from the ancient to the modern. I would also recommend the Oxford or Cambridge encyclopedias or companions to philosophy. They allow you to cut to the chase but are anything but light reading.

      Similarly I would resist the plunge into Durant’s massive eleven volume of history. It is a long slog through an immense amount of information and tends towards an encyclopedic approach rather than an analysis of history. Much depends on what one wants to learn. Certainly Toynbee is interesting but read the abridged two volume set unless you are doing research. Muller is another interesting writer on the general historical process. Indeed, their a number of theorists worth considering since none of them even gets it quite right. One can read Churchill’s History Of The English speaking People (4 volumes) and obtain good incite to English and British history but be aware that Winston has his own biases. Indeed, this is the occupational hazard for the lover of history, almost all histories are written with some bias in mind. That is why one reads several different authors who are writing about the same period and events, it gives one different perspectives from which one may synthesize ones own opinion.

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  3. This line was highly entertaining, and reminiscent of Hunt S. Thompson: “A person can only take some much time reading about history, god, and everything in between before going bonkers and running through downtown nude.” But, one thing I’ve noticed, if you are reading with less than perfect vision, it will make you sleepy (sometimes confused with boredom). So, you might want to make sure your glasses are on or contacts in or do a vision check.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. As a political blogger, I know exactly how you feel. I sometimes live-tweet debates and primary events and so forth; and I intended to do that for the most recent Republican debate. But then, while preparing to watch, I saw footage of the white racist guy sucker-punching the black protester at one of the Trump rallies and getting away with it (although he was arrested later), and the whole depressing seriousness of our current political state came thundering down on me. So instead of watching and live-tweeting, I turned off my computer and binge-watched “Archer.” Sometimes you really just have to step away and have a dumb laugh at harmless silliness.

    Liked by 4 people

    • I’ll second that. Most of my blog is political, which requires a bundle of reading — newspapers, magazines, and websites. If it weren’t for the music, novels, and movies that occupy my free time I’d be one of those people manning a roadblock in Arizona.

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  5. I find it telling that it was a book on the history of economic theory that compelled your second thoughts about you reading list. As for myself, I seldom use reading lists, I find them inhibiting. I read because I must read, I am compelled to read, it is a part of my being. I used to read only for information. Back in the sixties when I was a lowly enlisted man I was stationed on a large military base where the base library was quite large and somewhat up to date. I read my way through South and Latin America, every country, and back again. That taught me quite a lot about the European influence on those countries but left out the details of native heritage. The point being that when we make lists or set goals for reading we need to understand that the books we choose bias our understandings. The other lesson is that one learns how to choose good books. I never read the five and four star reviews on Amazon when I wish to buy a book. I always read the three and two star reviews for they are the more honest assessments. Of course nothing is as good as picking up the tome, reading the dust jacket, perusing the table of contents, reading a few pages at random, and so on. One can personally verify to quality of the book in ones hands. Fiction is the only exception to the rule.

    So with all due respect, welcome to the club of second thoughts. You have altered your direction in thought for the good. Believe me, there will be more of these choices to come. As to philosophy, I wish you well with that, it can be a deadly chore. For economics, beware, many of the assertions made by theories are false. Science, on the other hand, tends to be straight forward. And fiction, well, what is often called great can be deadly boring as all getout.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. that is one massive, deep list. I gotta yell you – I bailed on Kant, two or three times, page 150 or so in the ‘Critique…’ I’m not sure anyone has to read it all, I mean we’re mortal, and it wasn’t all correct. I like to deal in concepts, but they don’t all need the whole book. I recently read ‘The Death of Socrates’ and it made him and the Greeks sound a bit foolish. I would think if you wanted a full understanding of everyone’s POVs you’d need more than one lifetime. I think you’ll have to pick some, or like someone said above, dictionary of philosophy, history of, that sort of thing. Most folks end up specializing, following one train of thought or other, I guess.

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  7. I’m totally in the same place as you. I just worked my way through Marx, Althusser, and Laclau and I’m currently slogging through Frederic Jameson on Postmodernism. Back in middle school when I read for fun, I read fantasy novels like Robert Jordan and Terry Goodkind. Maybe I’ll start reading for fun again sometime, but for now I’m determined to keep going through my serious reading list 🙂 It totally does help to listen to non-depressing music. I can hardly stand to listen to angry or depressing music now, even though I used to be all about the hardest and heaviest metal. Have you heard Tacocat? They’re a girl band that’s kind of 50s rock revival, really fun. But anyway I do think that the media you choose to consume in some ways becomes you, so just like with a healthy diet you want to make sure your media consumption is balanced. What made you interested in all those serious books in the first place?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Forgive me if you’ve heard of him already, but one of the most spiritually uplifting musicians I’ve come across lately with such a fresh approach (for example uses uses a didgeridoo in his music and does so well) is Xavier Rudd. I’d start with Food in the Belly, Spirit Bird & White Moth. There’s also Solace and is first release To Let. He was discovered by fellow surfer Jack Johnson and is literally a musical prodigy that resisted the urge to be pushed into the direction of a single instrument. He puts on shows as a one-man band which displays his insane musical talent, sometimes he has a drummer assist him but until his most recent record it was pretty much just him. Plus he never doctors up his music from the studio.
      Most of his stuff is on YouTube – check out this the song Spirit Bird http://youtu.be/evmFq10D8h4
      and Fortune Teller http://youtu.be/VvQOUHsmho4 a live performance he did I think it was with BBC radio of Follow the Sun – is precisely the way it sounds on the record.
      My all-time favorite band is U2 partly because of their music is almost always positive and even when on a negative subject topic like Sunday bloody Sunday it still seems powerfully uplifting.
      I also love Ben Harper.
      Though Pearl Jam’s early stuff is angst ridden, Eddie Vedder has tremendous solo work and PJ’s more recent records are much more uplifting (not necessarily as phenomenal as 10 or Versus) but his Record Ukulele Songs is actually fantastic & the soundtrack you did for the movie Into the Wild still blows me away. Enough of myself proselytizing.
      I hope you enjoy Xavier and the other recommendations – all of which I’m sure you’re familiar with except perhaps Xavier Rudd.
      I’ll be listening… and I agree that you’ll get back to reading at some point. Nothing wrong with a break. (Forgive any mistakes or redundancies – I can only see a couple lines of what I am dictating in this little reply window and often makes much less sense to a reader than to me). G’day

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  8. My first thought was Economic Theory tends to have the same effect on me. That would have been my quitting point as well!

    I loved your reading list; quite an impressive endeavor and I hope you will still strive to read them all, just at your own pace. Not only is forced reading (even self-forced) not enjoyable, but you don’t absorb as much.

    Thank you for sharing your writing.

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    • Read that post on how dramatic life can be, if you seek to pulsate your passions to the beat of mesmeric music, to challenge life to compete with that. Yep, sure. Manifique! But being ‘untutured’ and very much so inexperienced in the ‘fineries of potential exocticness’ to be fevered by in life, just waltzing through some of these posts and comments here have pricked my curiosity. The path less travelled. Then I think, well maybe life has to be met ‘full on’, the good with the bad, the rough with the smooth’ and luxuriating in the ‘luxuries’ that God, or whoever, has bestowed down upon mankind, well methinks, a jab of pure reality helps to sober any feelings that life should be taken for granted. It’s a challenge which you have to meet halfway. Surely one loses part of one’s humanity if you don’t…? Just sharing some speculations, now that I have some time to reflect on life in general.. ‘Ideal World’ The Christians. Splendid lyrics. Bespeaks of honourable intentions. And in an Ideal World, we’d welcome that desire…? Spread the ethos of love then, methinks..

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  9. Like the people on holidays who spend their entire time behind a camera, sometimes we can get caught out doing an extreme amount of things that seem good – rather than getting our there and actually doing good. Life is far less excruciating when you’re out there living it.

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  10. I long ago came to the conclusion that I wasn’t really an academic, needing something quicker and more instinctive to get my juices flowing. Once they are, I reckon, is the time to go back to the booklist – the ‘system’ is then your own rather than an external syllabus. It’s easy to be reverential about authority – we learn it at school – but we have to learn to plough our own furrow. Stimulating post, thanks …

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Everything you can learn does not necessarily come from books. Experience, relationships, travel, all are important in giving you fodder for writing. And often they can be more fun! Balance is important, so read on, but have some fun on the side, too. 😉

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  12. I recommend permitting yourself to be smacked in the face by the deep, self-diluting Blow of Politics…so dis-human and dis-honest that one is all but forced to look at himself in the mirror, graze upwards and downwards, and Thank The Lucky Stars that you are not one of those sniveling, deep-seated pathos propelling snark from the podiums.

    There is the Human, there is the Strange, and there is the Alien. Sometimes twisting the volume-knob to 10, grabbing Exile on Main Street and sitting in the sunlight with a cigarette and a bottle-opener is just plain-and-simple good for the Soul.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Good for the soul
      Yes
      Thought I wanted just this sorta conversations with smart enthisiastic determined readers writers thinkers on my blog.
      Dejavoo from my dreams of booklists booklovers bookorgies
      The recomendations are keeping my unfaithful heart drooling.
      Brevity and your bottle opener image breath in me now. Less yes.

      Amazing people
      No choice but to follow

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  13. Thank you for sharing your feelings at this point in time. I believe we all make changes in our lives to better the “experience of living”, if even for a short time. As “the tovarysh connection” said, everything you can learn does not necessarily come from books. My life experiences have taken me to places I never thought I would ever be, some not so good and some perfectly wonderful. Each change has given me a “new perspective on life”. I enjoy the “life” I presently live in and never concern myself with “what comes next”. Enjoy your change however long it lasts. Best wishes in all you do.

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  14. This was great. I enjoyed reading this very much and the insight that you provided that I thought was just my own. I’m happy someone else in this world can see things in the similar ways that I do.

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  15. Thank God I am 60 and slowly going blind; I once intended to read all the ‘better books,’ but got over it when I was suddenly singled and had to support two children. But I do enjoy the way you write; It sounds familiar, somehow.

    Two things come to mind: you or someone mentioned Winston Churchill. I have a lovely little book which he wrote about his painting later in life. In it he confesses that he should have started with proper training but at his age one doesn’t have the time…so he just got to it. I, too, am a painter and did not start until I was over 50. There’s a lovely freedom in knowing you no longer have to do things the right way…like reading all the right books. I remember my mother read the Oxford encyclopedia…

    I am also reminded of a scene from Persuasion where Anne Elliott advises that Captain Renwick include a bit of prose in his reading:

    “… she thought it was the misfortune of poetry to be seldom safely enjoyed by those who enjoyed it completely; and that the strong feelings which alone could estimate it truly were the very feelings which ought to taste it but sparingly.

    His looks shewing him not pained, but pleased with this allusion to his situation, she was emboldened to go on; and feeling in herself the right of seniority of mind, she ventured to recommend a larger allowance of prose in his daily study; and on being requested to particularize, mentioned such works of our best moralists, such collections of the finest letters, such memoirs of characters of worth and suffering, as occurred to her at the moment as calculated to rouse and fortify the mind by the highest precepts, and the strongest examples of moral and religious endurances.”

    I am a bit curious, though, what it was that drew you to my writing?

    And before I go, I must admit to chuckling at one responder’s assertion that “science is so straight forward. ” was he being facetious? I recall hearing my supervisor saying there was no longer a reason to measure trace gases in the atmosphere because “we already knew all of the fundamentals of chemical reactions.” !?!?! He said this in 1993…and was my boss, telling me to drop the project.

    Again, I enjoy your writing, and recall the desire to know everything so that I would have all the right insights, all the right words, (dare I say, all the ‘best words’) to address all of life’s problems.

    I’m older now, much older, and see that some things really are simple.

    Blessings,

    Kitsy

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  16. Reading about your choices here in this post, I thought you must be at least in your forties. That is until I got to the sentence: “I am still very young, and life is excruciating long.” I’m, most assuredly, old enough to be your mother. I think you decision to change what you read and when you read it is sound, your reasoning for the change you’ll probably rethink as time goes on.

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  17. When you put your books away so you didn’t run down the street naked I enjoyed a deep laugh. And when you said Marx and some of the others were the “lighter” reading, I was amazed. I liked your writing. My brother used to be into heavy metal rock ‘n roll for decades, and may still be, and was a sound mixer for many years as well. Years and years ago, I was a Bob Dylan fan and The Rolling Stones and the Beatles, etc. So, I could only get some of your musical references. When the Beatles released their “White Album,” I started losing interest.
    Maybe you’ll read my blog today. We live in confusing times with lots of voices. I enjoy your writing. I will pray for some joy to surprise you and hope you don’t mind.

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  18. It’s about finding your passion, my friend. If economic theory and philosophy truly inspire you, wading through their weighty canonical tomes will be envigorating. And the beauty of passion is that it does not respect deadlines — if it takes you three years to complete your reading instead of one, it won’t make a difference.

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  19. Dear Mr Rogers, I was delighted that someone immediately noticed what I wrote today on Bryan Magee’s latest book. You’ve encouraged me to learn how to post blogs properly on WordPress. But these things no-longer come to one so easily at 75 than they do at your bright age. I also enjoyed your latest piece.

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  20. Great post. I was a philosophy major in college. I guess it helped. But philosophy is like banging your head against a brick wall, in that it feels so good when you stop. What happens is that a little logic and a little pure reason can go a long way.. Like yourself, (I assume) Pink Floyd was transformational in that I got to see a practical artistic application of philosophy through music. Once that got into my head it all made sense.

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  21. Oh, goodness, I totally agree. Life is too short to read boring books and listen to dull music. And of course, some of the best books are both exciting and deep. I’ve also given myself permission to have much more fun now with my reading. But I do think that the most interesting things happen if you interleave crazy fun reading with deep, effortful learning in a roughly 1:1 ratio. That way you keep hungry for both fun and learning. And every so often you find that magic spot where fun and learning are the same thing.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Don’t forget the poetry, fellow bibliophile. Life isn’t long enough to live without it. Thank you for reading my blog; and thank you for caring enough about words to craft them. Keep going!

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  23. I solved this problem by always reading at least two books at the same time – one is a page-turner or something I potentially read fifteen times already… sometimes something mindbogglingly stupid! These I read when I’m tired, need forgetting about some worry or can’t be bothered to make an effort. The other one is something that I consider worth reading. 🙂 Although it has to be said this method of progressing does slow down the process of getting through all the good books I want to read somewhat: I’ve been looking forward to reading The March of the Ten Thousand by Xenophon for at least 5 years but I’m sure someday I’ll get to it. 🙂 I also realised in the past few years that non-fiction history books don’t have to be boring – you just need to pick your authors carefully!

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  24. I love this! Live for how and be happy in this moment. I’m very similar. I tend to force myself to be contemplative and profound instead of letting those things arise organically. There’ll always be time for Proust, but now it’s time for Fifty Shades of Grey and some Nick Sparks!😂

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  25. “So what exactly am I trying to get at? If I have to sum it up, it comes down to this: don’t surround yourself in boredom and misery, things are never as serious as you think they are. Drive a little faster, play your music a little louder, love a little brighter and read a little happier. ”

    ALL of the yes.
    Thank you for posting. 🙂

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  26. If you need something brighter to read during your excruciatingly long life, I would like to recommend Brothers K, if somehow you haven’t already read it. For some reason I wonder if you’d enjoy it, based on what I’ve read on your blog. By the way, your writing is exceptional.

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