RA (Readers Anonymous)

hi, my name is blete and i am reading addict. i realize that my addiction is currently controlling my life. when i can’t get my hands on a book, i will pilfer reading material of the unsuspecting subway passangers, sneak peaks at their newspapers and books. i am the horrible neighbour scouring garbage pails for bound book packs and i cannot bring myself to throw away any reading stuff that comes my way, even if it is orphaned dress care instructions. i hate IKEA manuals because they come in diagrams and pictures only. would it kill them to put a few written instructions here and there?

i never had a chance since i was in my mother’s womb. both sides of the family are addicted to this horrible affliction. my grandfather was from this village where apparently everybody had a bumpy nose because they read even when walking and did not see where they were looking. when i was 4, my wonderfully selfish grandfather took advantage of my young eyes and taught me how to read the newspaper. there i was, a young unpoisoned mind, playing with my dollies and dreaming of being a princess and he just used me without regard or care for my tender age.

(remember how grandfathers and well wishing uncles would feed alcohol to boy toddlers so they got used to the taste and grew up to be men? the souring faces were a very  sought after form of entertainment as well. )

anyway, instead of alcohol i started getting fed letters, words and whole newspaper articles. by the age of 6 i was entirely able to not only read but also analyze any reporting on crop growth by the “new man”, the latest issues of imperialism-chauvinism, and the wise words of our unerring and shiny leader. why couldn’t he have left me to become a shallow-minded young lady of leisure and married the first millionare that came my way? why grandfather, why? porque?

the second blow happened by 6 1/2. my uncle was too lazy to tell me more fairy tales and showed a book in my hand. (he owed me for using me to pick up girls) i believe it was: “The adventures of Dinpak”. something clicked and the monster was created. for the next 10 years, my parents would be called to school with one and one concern only, their daughter read too much. grandmother and aunts urgent assistance was enlisted to help me learn how to jump rope, interact with my peers and stop disappearing from my own birthday parties to read. they were not very successful. my addiction had a firm hold on me.

for quite the longest time, i have been an insufferable know-it-all, finishing sentences and producing essays left and right, advising friends and snubbing Friday fun for books. i have to have my fix. i sneak to the book section of the drugstore when my cousin is not looking, i meet all my dates at Barnes and Noble, and my room is overflowing with every type of useless books that make no sense to everybody else but me. i have been compared to Hilter by my charitable uncle, who apparently also bought books on every subject imaginable and could not concentrate on only one thing. i have been guilty of taking a book at a bar on a Friday night, and reading it right in front of the flabberghasted bartender.

i am trying to quit but it is soo hard, so damn hard. i take it day by day and have lapses quite often. i caught myself hanging around the books at the 99 cent store yesterday and getting ready to buy some spanish bible. i have taped a picture of me and my Civil Education teacher in third grade in front of my book shelf. i tell myself i will end up like her if i do not stop, an old half blind hag with sparse hair teased into a beehive stuffed with tissue, and surrounded by incestuous cats, with my nose always in a book, and my mind always in a cloud.

and the latest “Harry Potter” beckons. excuse me.


22 thoughts on “RA (Readers Anonymous)

  1. Bletezzz, you are at your best when you talk about yourself. I really enjoyed this reading.

    Note: may be the only pill against the somuchreading is having kids. You still will be reading, but probably more selectively (children books, literature on kids, their growing, development, inteligence and education. Already scared?:P.) Tell me then. :)))

  2. self, trust me, i can deal with kids. it is the adults that leave me completely perplexed. I’d even have an excuse to continue collecting fairy tale books.
    eni, possibly you are right. but our noses would be lumpy because of all the bumping into eachother or electric poles. 😀

  3. Bletezz, I believe you. The problem is, the kids will become adults one day. All you can wish is that they became some reasonable, reliable and trusty people. Like yourselve 😉

  4. Blete,
    Thanks for bringing back some sweet childhood memories. I used to sleep with ”Dinpaku” under my pillow. Literally. Then along came “Alice in Wonderland”, “Mary Poppins” and the rest of the saga. I devoured thousand of pages and followed absolutely no rules in terms of chronology, page order, topic, size and type of book. I owe my shortsightedness to the happy reading hours. However, sometime between university, growing up and starting work I lost the habit. I do read now, but it’s nothing compared to the old days. I am trying (well, at least in my mind) to regain the habit and the interest but I have successfully failed until today. I would prefer being an addict (like you) over a lazyhead like myself any given day. So count that as a blessing and give us a tip, will you?


  5. I am an addict myself. We should form some discussion group or smth. Get some kind of therapy. If you want I can present you my optician. So at least you get a good pair of glasses and don’t go blind while doing drugs (reading, that is).

    Te pershendes!

  6. one would worry about your social skills and well-being from reading the above. I however have had the pleasure of meeting you outside of the blog and know enough to be relieved that you are not a dork or someone who shyes (i know ive spelled it wrong)away from any social activity.

  7. nese e kuptova mire.

    Harry Potter asnje nuk mund ti dedikonte nje ode kaq te ndjere dhe te arrire. Une kam filluar ta kontrolloj veten kur dikush qe jetonte me mua duhet te fshihte librin per te me folur. Qe atehere nuk lexoj me ne shtepi dhe vetem ne tren ndaj flas me dashuri per librat.

  8. tena, kot thua qe nuk kupton. nje nga aresyet qe nuk marr patenten eshte qe nuk do te mundem te lexoj me kur t’i jap makines. go figure!

    aloire, you should talk to my high school friends. on second thought, please don’t!

    strangeman, i have been cursed with 20/20 vision. i have been trying to get glasses all my life but everytime i go to the optician it simply does not happen. that is why i have a very week spot for guys with glasses. but that is another blog entry.

    di, i envy you your glasses. as to reading, i am happy you dropped that affliction but all you have to do to relapse is pick up Terry Pratchett books. the man is addictive. what the heck even Lindsay Lohan succumbed to temptation.

    self, thank you. even if i do not know who you are talking about. LOL.

  9. smart grandpa. mine wanted me to read it from head to toe, including the TV program. then he got to drinking onion juice which brought his eyes back to ship shape and i was not needed any longer. but the damage had already been done.

  10. Let’s make a RA meeting, a rehabilitation and detox home and whatever else s needed.
    Yeah, before i forget, Tena should be given the honorable duty of preparing the twelve step program needed to get off the addiction (or at least to control it) and Bletebzz you will assist her (seeng as you have the necessary disease insight).

    PS: Visiting relatives as a child I had to ravage their bookshelves, find a cosy corner and start reading. If I had not read through at least half the book by the time we had to head home I was very disappointed. However the reading abilities and concentration on the topic(book) at hand has grown weary with time.

  11. Blete,
    It’s amazing! Just yesterday I went bookshopping in the excruciating afternoon heat. Bought my first (yes, kill me) English copy of Harry Potter (“The half-blood prince”-it was the cheaper book, the other being “Prisoner of Azkaban”). Made it through the first 50 pages between 11 and 12 pm last night. My not-yet-dead imagination makes up for not having read the previous books. However, what I wanted to say is that I happened to pick a Terry Pratchett book. I was attracted by the cover. All I needed was a little encouragement. Now that I have it, I am only 7 hours away from owning it. Thanks a lot.

    P.S. Do not envy my glasses. I have been hating them for most of my adult llife. I have only recently come to accept the fact that I will die wearing glasses. It helps if you find a cool frame, though…

  12. hehehehe….i loved reading this post and learning more about your childhood readings encouraged from your beloved grandpa:)) i feel that i belong some to this club because anywhere i go i have my book with me. in fact, when i get off the train and going to work i’m still reading. one day i’m going to bump into someone because i’m too focused with my face and nose in the book:))

  13. Dinpaku? Blete, aty me rri; nja nga ata qe eshte lexuar nja 20 here po.

    Dora te lumte per kete shkrim kaq komunikues me cilindo.
    S’eshte zor te te beje njeriu nje dhurate ty: nje liber (por jo Lufta dhe Paqia, ne mos gaboj… 😉 )

    Cheers, B! 🙂

  14. hehehe, per 30 vjetorin, m’u bene pothuajse 200 e ca dollare giftcards from Barnes and Nobles and about 5 books. oh yes, one piece of jewelry as well.

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