Monday, September 3, 2018

Uh-oh, We Have A Pending Book Emergency!

This is what the bookcase in The Van looks like at the beginning of a trip.

The upper shelf is fully stocked with $1 books from the clearance rack at Half Price Books and in the lower rack are the magazines, in the order they arrived with the oldest in the front, that I subscribe to and stockpile while at home.

I used to have a LOT of magazine subscriptions but I eventually let some of them go (In fact that Wood magazine in front is the 3rd or 4th issue I’ve received since my subscription ran out and I didn’t renew. They just keep sending them anyway. . .) and others died the death of modern publishing which is driving the printed word out of existence, so my magazine stock has been dwindling.

I read books all the time, road or home, but I quit reading magazines at home because I found myself rushing through them. If I wait until I’m on the road, without the pressures of chores and enticement other distractions, I take my time and read them properly.

I have yet to adopt e-books, not because tech scares me, I made my career out of high-tech computer crap after all, but I’m just so used to paper and ink and dog-eared corners when I’m reading there hasn’t been much impetus to make the switch. (Though we are Whole-Food customers so I will soon be taking a closer look at Amazon Prime, and if that pans out I can see a Kindle-Fire in my future.) So what you see in the bookcase is the extent of the reading material I have available, and I read a lot. (One semester in high school I kept track and found that I read 45 books over and above what was required for schoolwork.)


So when my bookcase looks like this I start to get jittery, wondering if I’m going to have to go through the book-withdrawal DT’s.

The magazines, now all of them read cover to cover, have migrated to one of the overhead cabinets where I throw all my recyclable paper until I get home again.

On the top shelf the backwards books on the left are the ones I’ve read and will go to our local outreach resale shop once I get home, so all I have left are the 2 books on the right plus the one I’m currently reading which is where it belongs, in my pocket for easy and constant access.

The left-most book with a green highlighter clipped to it is a special case that probably warrants its own post - someday - - maybe.

It’s a copy of Thoreau’s Walden (This particular edition also includes Civil Disobedience, which will thrill my mom to no end – or not. [You see, she and I shared a personal event when I was in my early teens that involved a late-night traffic-light and the questioning of laws that we both still vividly remember. . .]) that stays here in The Van and never in the house.

So now I need to get the map out and plot just how many books away from the homestead I am, because back there I keep anywhere from 50 to 150 books stockpiled away in an upper-cabinet from which I can replenish my shelf!

And we all know a full bookshelf is happiness.


  1. I prefer actual books too, but the kindles do save a lot of space, and there’s quite a bit of free stuff. I have a bunch of John Muir books to read on my kindle and Walden too. At home, Walden occupies a prominent space in the bookcase.

    1. Procrastination reins around here and I STILL have done nothing that moves me any closer to becoming a Prime member. . .