Thursday, December 10, 2020

No patience, none at all.

 I've always been a bookworm - I'd read anything printed. And I always finished any book I started even if I hated it, with the exception of "War and Peace". I truly question that anyone has ever read that whole damn thing - so boring, and long. So long. 

But it seems in the last 10 years or so I finally have allowed myself to close a book if it doesn't hold my interest. Also I don't seem to have interest in, or patience for, really good literature. My reading list is murder/detective mysteries, oh and yes, Elizabeth Strout. 

Last week the writer Alison Lurie died. I had heard of her but never read any of her books. Naturally there was a run on her books at the library but I managed to snag 2 or 3. While the description of her novels seemed like they would be right up my alley turns out they aren't. 

I just finished, more or less, 'The Last Resort'. By more or less I mean I read a little more than half the book and then just skipped to the last 2 chapters. I do that a lot - read half a book, then skip to the last 2 chapters because you know once the premise is laid out all the stuff in the middle is just exposition - lots of yadda yadda yadda and in many cases lots of description - of people, places, things, scenery - oy, who the hell cares who or what something looks like if it has no real bearing on the story. Tell me the damn story and do it quickly - move it! 

Do it quickly - that's my new motto it seems. I can't read or watch or even listen to anything that meanders along. Spit it out, move it along, let's go - chop-chop. What's your point? Where is this all going. Skip the nuance, I have no time or interest. 

I used to joke that my motto was "Instant gratification isn't fast enough". Now it is no joke, it is my reality. 

Maybe because I am old and time is of the essence? Or maybe there are no new plots, no new stories, same old, same old; been there, done that. Tell me something new; show me something new; gimme a new angle.

Kinda like sunsets - especially the red ones (and I really should look up why the sky looks red at sunset - remind me to do that) - seen one, seen 'em all. 

 

8 comments:

  1. I love your motto about instant gratification, thanks for that smile today. :)

    I am also a 'Tell me the damn story and do it quickly - move it!' reader these days. In my much younger years I enjoyed reading the classics and one winter break in high school read both Gone With the Wind and Doctor Zhivago, and loved them. I was also a big fan of anything by Thomas Hardy in high school.

    A few years ago I tried re-reading my favorites and couldn't stand all the description. I do not have a problem stopping a book when it gets boring, there are too many books out there I might find more interesting and fun yo read. :)

    Now I read the first bit of a book and skip to the end to ensure it has a happy ending, if not I'm done with that book.

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    1. It was a big decision when I finally gave in to not finishing books I wasn't enjoying LOL I've been skipping description since forever - I remember the Clan of the Cave Bear books - loved the books but oh my dear who cares what the hell the terrain looks like, it had nothing to do with the story and I swear more than half the book was description.

      I do that happy ending thing too, if a movie or a book doesn't have a happy ending I don't want to see it or read it - is this a thing for us older folks?

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  2. As I've said before, I don't read books because of my eyes, and I don't like long descriptions either.

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    1. My eyes are wonky as all get out but thankfully I can see well enough to do all the "normal" things eyes allow you to do. As much as I get short tempered with books these days reading is still a major pastime for me.

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  3. I think Choose Your Own Adventure books need to make a comeback, in adult versions.

    I think I read War and Peace, and kept plowing through the boringness because I figured if I had already wasted a chunk of life reading it, might as well plow through and be able to say I read the damn thing. It's also quite possible that I'm making that up and didn't finish it, and I'm getting confused because I read Anna Karenina. I was on a boring Russian classics kick and read a couple of Dostoevsky novels around the same time.

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    1. Chekov is the only Russian author I have read, and enjoyed. But then I prefer plays to novels. On the other hand, the Russian composers are my favorites - perhaps the Russian sensibility is better listened to than read.

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  4. I tried a Russian novel but all those characters name blahblahblahbacevski had me too confused to follow the plot.

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    1. And then their names seem to change completely every coupla hundred pages or so...

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