Friday, May 27, 2005

Me me meme

Trix at Whippoorwill has tagged me for a meme.

When I first started reading blogs, it took me forever to figure out what a meme was. It's kind of like a blog virus, only a voluntary one. Someone has an idea and then other people copy it for their blogs. The most famous is the "100 things about me" lists that you see on lots of blogs. (I haven't done one, mainly because I would find it difficult to stop at 100. I'm thinking of starting a "100 things about me before the age of 5" meme for egotistical blabbermouths like myself. Feel free to run away screaming at any time.)

Anyway, recently someone decided that people weren't paying enough attention to their memes I guess, and memes became more like chain letters. You get "tagged" or "handed a stick" or something similar. I generally defy chain letters on general principle. But if chain letters were about books...?

Smartypants version:

1. Total # of Books I’ve Owned:
They have owned me instead

2. Last Book I Bought:
on a whim

3. Last Book I Read:
in bed

4. Five Books That Mean A Lot To Me:
a b c d e

At heart I am truly a smartypants.

My more conventional (boring) answers:

1. Total # of Books I’ve Owned:
Before we moved, we ran out of room for bookcases at 11 and started piling books on the floor. We've since downsized and used the library more.

2. Last Book I Bought:
Two from Lee May, after hearing him speak. In the interest of space-saving I'm trying to use the library. Unless I have a chance to buy directly from the author. Or it's something I really want. I will probably buy John Wesley Harding's book Misfortune too.

3. Last Book I Read:
Still haven't finished both of May's, because it has taken me so long to get an eye exam appt and then to order new glasses. My eyes had reached the limit of my arm's reach, it was hard to find someone to turn pages for me in the next room, and I'm a terrible procrastinator when it comes to doctor's visits.

4. Five Books That Mean A Lot To Me:
Too hard. Field guides and poetry and art and literature and language and neurology and everything else. I listed some of my favorite authors and a few books in the blogger profile if you're really interested. It has everything except my favorite color (blue).

Since I ducked out of this question I will quote my favorite book passage for you though. It's from A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens. Chapter 3 to be precise, "The Night Shadows".

A wonderful fact to reflect upon, that every human creature is constituted to be that profound secret and mystery to every other. A solemn consideration, when I enter a great city by night, that every one of those darkly clustered houses encloses its own secret; that every room in every one of them encloses its own secret; that every beating heart in the hundreds of thousands of breasts there, is, in some of its imaginings, a secret to the heart nearest it!

That is my favorite part. I think about it all the time, especially while driving at night. The rest of the paragraph is good too:

Something of the awfulness, even of Death itself, is referable to this. No more can I turn the leaves of this dear book that I loved, and vainly hope in time to read it all. No more can I look into the depths of this unfathomable water, wherein, as momentary lights glanced into it, I have had glimpses of buried treasure and other things submerged. It was appointed that the book should shut with a spring, for ever and for ever, when I had read but a page. It was appointed that the water should be locked in an eternal frost, when the light was playing on its surface, and I stood in ignorance on the shore. My friend is dead, my neighbour is dead, my love, the darling of my soul, is dead; it is the inexorable consolidation and perpetuation of the secret that was always in that individuality, and which I shall carry in mine to my life's end. In any of the burial-places of this city through which I pass, is there a sleeper more inscrutable than its busy inhabitants are, in their innermost personality, to me, or than I am to them?

5. Tag Five People with this list.
Charles, because he needs something to write about, and I stole the smartypants style from him anyway.
Jenni, because she sent me a book meme before
Rhodent, because she has proven her willingness to go along with memes
Jenny, because we've talked about books before, and
Maikopunk, because her blog has "book" in the title, and if that's not asking for it I don't know what is.

Anyone on the list, please feel free to ignore it, you won't hurt my feelings. I'll assume that you're fed up with memes. (Jenny peut avoir ras-le-bol avec ces memes.) Anyone not on the list, no you are not chopped liver. I almost put you on it, really. Please go ahead and participate anyway if the spirit moves you.


M'Zelle Jenny said...

Hello Karen !
I answered the questions a while ago (don't remember when exactly) ; I will try and find the link to my answers.

M'Zelle Jenny said...

I've just checked : March, 26. Some answers have changed though : last book I read was "Silk" by Alessandro Baricco, the last book I bought was today, for my Mum, a book about birdsongs, with a CD to recognize them. How many books I've owned is a tricky one ! Hundreds... probably less than a thousand though !
Meaningful books : "The Just-So Stories" (read by my Granny when I was a child), "The Little Prince", "1984", "Moby Dick" and the Arsène Lupin books (don't know if you've heard of those ? they're not great literature, but they certainly gave me a taste for reading when I was a kid).

Rurality said...

Oh my memory is terrible these days, I guess I forgot that you'd done it already!

I was so looking forward to reading again after I got my new glasses... and they've messed them up. I still can't see to read. Back to the Dr's office later in the week!

jenni said...

ok im on it.