I am about to finish reading The Great Gatsby. It has sat on top of my mother’s magazine stack for I don’t know how long. It has sat on the bed, on the console table, on the couch and on the dinner table. Whenever I get the sense of reading it I just sweep it off from its mundane stationary position. Along it, I have started reading some pages of my growing stacks of unread books.
This is me.
Most of my books doesn’t cost a fortune. I’ve grabbed them from a thrift shop I frequent whenever I go to the mall. I say I am getting by through reading. I have this growing list of saved links in my Facebook of articles that interests me and they too need some love of reading. I told my bestfriend about this that these reading thing is what keeps me here doing. To get by and not really slack. Maybe I am slacking from the real world of social, of competition, of surviving on my own. Bat shit that is.
I think I am stuck to my high school self. A realization that I’ve been trying to shuffle in my head. I don’t know what growing means. I don’t know what maturity means. Even the coming of age thing. Maybe I am embracing too much of this self that it sometimes drag me to hiding. To hiding and apathy. To just going into my room and locking the door away from it all. Impulse is not my thing. I observe mostly. I see little things and enjoy it unwrapping. Taking time. Steeping. Stewing.
I’ve been stuck to the comforts of wearing walking shorts, plain shirt and sneakers. I feel more like myself with these on my back. But the feeling of being invisible transpires most from it. More like a disguise or blending with the rest. If the need to put myself there I stashed it back in the closet and look for a pair of trousers and dress shirts. I do some growing up too for that instance.
Greed has salted the earth for a long time now. The continuous proliferation of stories brought in by news covered everyday is just demeaning humanity in the sense that what gets brought up are too much of animosity, suffering and lost lives. Disheartening at times that I skip, been skipping news channels or segments for a while now. I am reduced to reading news article now. Less bloody. Less gory.
Like the growing pile of my unread books, getting by in the counter waiting for me to pick them up, dust them off and open its pages. The smell of paper is like cork. With most of my books bought from the thrift shop a lot of them are in pre-owned state, some have dents, tear or scratch on the cover but all are in very good condition. I always make sure that pages are intact and free from any tear. Jonathan Franzen’s Freedom, Jack Kerouac’s On The Road, Bret Lott’s Jewel, Anne Fitch’s White Oleander and J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in The Rye are what awaits me. Some are random authors that interest me with their story and sometimes its cover when I just pass by the bookstore and let time pass without expecting something to have. Leaving it to the wind.
When I feel like soaking in reading time, music is my second company. I discount having my own room much less having a sound proof room I can quietly indulge my book in hand. So my solution is my mobile phone and my third brother’s headphones. Without this the TV volume will only rattle and reverberate in the room. I recently put on my youngest brother’s lamp by the dresser table beside the twin bed to really create that dim lighting and reading nook mood. With all these set up, I am off grid temporarily.
This is my getting by. Thank you.