Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Where do you fall in poll of U.S. reading habits?

No wonder we are becoming a nation of ignoramuses. Nobody is reading. Everybody is apparently playing video games, playing golf, or bloviating with or at the television pundits. A recent poll found the following:

* One in four Americans read no books last year
* More women are avid readers than men
* Southerners read more than rest of country
* Democrats, liberals read slightly more books than GOP, conservatives

We seem to have recognized the value in exercise for keeping our bodies in good working order. When are we going to recognize that THINKING is what keeps our minds (and perhaps our governments, values and families) in good working order?


I've got 2 books on my radar screen this week.

  1. Uncommon Arrangements: Seven portraits of Married Life in London Literary Circles 1910-1939 by Katie Roiphe. These were the growing years of my mother. (She married in 1939. Between Katherine Mansfield, H.G. Wells, Bertrand Russell, Vanessa Bell and Virginia Wolfe, it is no wonder that my mother didn't know what to hope for in marriage. If you think Brittany, Lindsay, or J-Lo have invented anything new with their shenanigans (and libidos) go back and read about these post-Victorian literary celebrities. Oh, and there were so-called gay marriages, too.

  2. Rules for Renegades: how to make more money, rock your career and revel in your individuality by Christine Comaford-Lynch. Ms. Lynch seems to have made multiple fortunes and have a genetically implanted entrepreneurial spirit. I have major reservations about whether I can cruise at anything close to the speed and altitude she does, but the anecdotes are inspiring (and often funny), and the "rules" make sense in the current climate.

Consider these examples:

  • Everything's an illusion, so pick one that's empowering
  • An MBA is Optional, a GSD is essential. GSD = Gets Stuff Done
  • Build Power Instead of Borrowing It
  • Rock Rejection and Finesse Failure
  • Learn to love Networking
  • Resign as General Manager of the Universe (The Control Freak 12- step program!!)

Go read a book. Fiction, non-fiction, practical, challenging, comforting. And when you've done that, read a book to a kid if you have one!

1 comment:

wenders said...

How can 25% of the country not have read *A* book last year?!?! I don't understand.

And as for the optional MBA - NO KIDDING. On The Apprentice, the Street Smart team seemed much more productive than the Book Smart Team (that was a few seasons ago, I think).