Tuesday, December 31, 2013


Recently upon the intertubez there was visited a mighty wind of complaint that those of us who had many books, and posted pictures of such, were some sort of mark of elitism. (This was an evolution out of the mighty wind about the "selfie", in of itself an amusing wind.)

Bollocks, I say. Bollocks. Owning books is a mark of educating oneself, improving oneself, entertaining oneself. Thinking. Striving. Wrestling. "A man's reach ought to exceed his grasp—" and all that.

I own something on the order of 10,000 physical books and about 5,000 electronic books and a couple of hundred audiobooks. They are among my most prized possessions. They are objects of my own choice. Nobody has fed these to me in a stream of no choice (e.g., television). They take me to places where I cannot go, entertain me with stories, allow me to speak to people (authors, historical figures, fictional characters) that I'll never have a chance to meet. Elitism? Bollocks, books are the great equalizer. Spread them to the 99%, it's our greatest weapon against the 1%.

Nice to see others do not agree with the claim of elitism.

1 comment:

  1. I sometimes joke about having too many books, but really, I'm quite happy to look at my bookshelves and my boxes of books and my nearly-full Kindle and think that at any moment, I can pretty much read whatever I want to read. It's a great feeling. I definitely need to cull some books from my shelves, though (fairly sure I don't need that 1970s book on ESP development anymore... though did I ever really need it in the first place?), but that will still leave more books than I have shelf space for, and that thought is really only daunting when I contemplate moving in a year. I'm happy to read as much as I do, to have as many books as I do, and I wouldn't want it any other way.