Saturday, May 10, 2008

Apathy while Reading

The book I'm currently reading bores me. I just found out.

But do I put down the book and start another? No. It's a curious phenomenon that I've witnessed myself performing in the past. I will have no interest in a book I'm--presumably--reading for pleasure, yet I'll continue to read it regardless. Sometimes it takes me about a hundred pages to realize I don't really care about what I'm reading.

So I keep reading. All the while thinking about other things, only going through the motions.

I think it has something to do with optimism on my part. The book will get better. The cover looked so interesting. The author is so well-known. All these factors feed my drudgery as I search in vain for a reason to continue reading. I loose interest, loose the story, loose all understanding.

There's pride on the line too. I want to be able to tell people, "Yeah I read that." Honestly, I'm a bit pretentious that way. I fancy myself one of the literary elite, knowledgeable in the world of novels, essays, and literature. In reality, I only seem knowledgeable when compared to the products of a generation lost to television.

You know, the word "literature" always dumbfounded me. Throughout my education, I've signed up for English classes because I enjoyed reading and discussing the books other's termed literature. To me, they were just great books. How does something become "literature" and who decides? If it were up to me, of course, literary conceptions would change a bit--induction of graphic novels, science fiction, and good magazines for starters.

Regardless, I seem to be needlessly trapped in a book no one ever told me to read. No doubt, I'll finish it but not for pleasure, for completion. Something will not let me stop--like a drug addict without the high or the Pink Floyd video. I must finish the action I started (I swear I'm not OCD).

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