The Adventures of Kidney Boy

A Journal About Living With End Stage Renal Disease. Dialysis. Transplants. Love. Family. Friends. The Unsung Donor. This is my life, from the end of a needle to the bottom of a pill bottle.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Me & My Books: A Love Song

Last night, I pulled an old book off my shelf - it was my hardcover copy of Stephen King's "The Dead Zone". I wanted some nice, easy reading and I didn't feel like using my Kindle app. The book itself is over 30 years old, and the paper has slightly yellowed... the dust jacket is a bit frayed and the plastic is coming apart a bit. The pages themselves are rough - kind of pulpy. I can feel the wood in them. And the smell from the pages... wow. That old smell. The smell of my old library - filled to the brim with tomes uncounted and adventures to be had. Immediately, I was young again... alone, and huddled in the corner of the library somewhere. Sitting on that uncomfortable chair covered with rough orange fabric that smells as musty and mysterious as the library. I'm wrapped in love. I'm wrapped in that feeling you have when you're young - where the world is big, open, wide and full of possibilities, and that book you have in your hand is the gateway to those worlds. Those worlds you have yet to know. I ran my fingers over the pages, and saw the beautiful black print, and I smelled my past, my hope, my eagerness.... the ghosts of a lifetime filled my eyes and olfactory senses and there I sat, 20 years later, filled with memories of a life.

It's just a stupid old book, right? As a kid, the story was so compelling, but now I smile a little more at the things I now understand but did not as a youth. But I love it anyway - this little piece of pop-culture. I left a piece of myself back there, decades ago, in all those little nooks and crannies of my hometown and school libraries. I loved finding that old kid there, in the pages of this book. This is why, despite my love for my kindle and the convenience of having books on demand at my finger tips, I will never, ever abandon my old reliables. My old paper loves - my flesh, my blood left there on the pages of the books that defined my past. I will always and forever own my books, just as they own me.

~Steve
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