Sunday, November 01, 2009
As my Whimsy takes me
I went to a small library book sale yesterday and came away with three cartons of books ($82), and now have minor mountain of new reading, and even some books to sell, including a signed John Updike first edition - the best of the lot, moneywise (paid $1). But, these concerns are overridden, and all books superceded, since I stopped in at a favorite secondhand book shop this morning in pursuit of more Dorothy L. Sayers, and emerged with a softcover reprint of all the Lord Peter short stories and a tatty copy of Busman's Honeymoon. My dilemma: until Busman's Honeymoon is finished, I will get precisely nothing else accomplished. And it's already late in the day, today, if I want to sleep well tonight. So I feel I must put off starting it until tomorrow, when I can devote the majority of the day to its reading. Such sloth! Perhaps I should plan particularly unpleasant jobs on either side of all that pleasure. Turning over the compost pile, or doing the final weeding in the garden, say, or handwashing heavy sweaters. This Yankee work ethic is a rather dubious inheritance, when all is said and done. When I long for insouciance. Maybe I should read back-issues of The Idler, next? Or more Sayers - at one point in Strong Poison, Peter looks around his library of fine first editions (he is a book-collector, you see, another reason to love him) and wonders what good they are, in real life. And then quickly comes to his senses. Let us follow suit.