Monday Morning Musings

Posted on August 14, 2017 under Monday Morning Musings with one comment


“ So many books. So little time.”

Frank Zappa

Life is a balancing act. We’re always trying to find the ideal set of variables to give us a long, healthy and happy life. But so often, humans are a study in contradiction. We are prone to excesses and discipline is as elusive as the Loch Ness monster. We’re either eating too much or too little. We work too hard or not enough. We’re sleeping our lives away or trying to manage on 5 hours of sleep a night. We’re running marathons or have our arses stuck in a lazyboy chair.

When it comes to reading books, I have been a classic yo yo. Over my lifetime, I have read in fits and starts. I will read five books in a row, devouring every spare hour of the day in a form of escapism and/or enlightenment. And then, I won’t read for eight months. But on a recent trip to India, I rediscovered books and expect them to be my constant companion for the last third of my life. I just had my 66th. birthday so I have my eye on 99! ( Here is my thank you to all who sent well wishes: )

When I realized that I couldn’t get any English speaking television  channels in India ( other than Animal Planet !), I turned to books and I’ve been on a tear ever since. I have completely given up “the tube” and since last November, I have read 21 books.

True confessions. While I was a reasonably good student in high school, there were simply too many distractions at university to keep me focused on my studies. Can you say “wine, women and song?”  I spent a lot of time in the library but don’t be deceived. Most of the time was spent in the basement playing cards. That is where I learned to play bridge which might be the only tangible achievement in three years. My dual major was poker and hearts. Occasionally, I bemoan the fact that I didn’t pay more attention to the other floors in the library.

BTW. One class that I never missed was Father Rod MacSween’s . I took two courses from him and he was easily the best professor I had. He was brilliant and mischievous. There were always a few Sisters taking his course. Often he would get them to read a salacious passage or ask for an interpretation of something lewd!

So. What have I been reading? Fiction? Non fiction?It really doesn’t matter. Like Frank Zappa ( Mother’s of Invention ) said, there is so little time and so many books to read. Thus far, I have taken a scattershot approach. I’m reading anything and everything. Mark Twain, Pope Francis, Obama, Salman Rushdie, Kafka, Joseph Boyden, and Rohinton Mistry to name a few. I’ve also read the first two Harry Potter books so that I can talk about Muggles with my grandchildren.

Regarding Salman Rushdie. If you want to know what’s it’s like to cross the finish line at the Boston Marathon, read “ Midnight’s Children.” It is a very tough read and many times, I thought of packing it in but I trudged on. There is no elation finishing a marathon. It’s more like relief that the pain is over. I’m not likely to read “ The Satanic Verses” unless I run out of reading material!

I guess I’m trying to complete my education in the twilight of my life. One thing that I did learn at university is that learning should be a lifelong pursuit.

Is it possible to read too many books? I don’t think so.

Have a great week.

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One Response to Monday Morning Musings

  1. Greg Albert says:

    Another good read Len.Sure glad you had youself a good birthday.So when is your next book comming out ? As I enjoyed the three that you wrote.Anyway have a good week and the main thing is try and behave yourself.


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