Wednesday, February 27, 2008

And All This Was About Shelving Books, For Crying Out Loud

Scott McLemee wrote an article called Bookshelf and Self that discusses a Time blog post called The Unabridged Rules of Library Management and a response to it called Bookshelves at another blog.

They were all meant to be tongue-in-cheek accounts of the correct way to store books, but as the writers got further and further from the original piece (The Unabridged Rules of Library Management. Remember?), the humor became, shall we say, drier and drier? McLemee, for instance, quoted that gut-busting humorous Francis Bacon.

I am predicting that this will go on for another month or two with writers picking up the subject and writing about what these three authors had to say and then, after that, what the first four authors had to say, and then, after that, what the first five authors had to say, until someone has enough material to get a book contract.

And I'll probably read it. But I'll try to get it at the library because I don't like to have to store and clean books. I pay taxes so someone else can do that.

The link to the third, the first...well, the one I read...wait, I read all of them...came from artsJournal


Sam said...

I haven't read the essays in question, but I have read Montaigne (or tried to).

In college there was a professor that I loved so much, I was willing to take his semester long Montaigne course.

Gail Gauthier said...

Ah, you saw this post before I eliminated the mention of Montaigne. I eliminated it because I didn't think it added anything to what I was talking about, plus saying that I hated Montaigne (as I did) was somewhat off the subject. On top of all that, I got so little from my reading of Montaigne that for all I know, he is supposed to be funny.

I didn't read him until I took a graduate course on writing essays about 5 or 6 years ago. He was just one of the writers we studied. I had been hearing about him for a long, long time prior to that. Reading his work was a big disappointment.

I'm not sure whether I was disappointed in him as a writer or in myself as a reader.

Kate said...

Well, I'm just as pleased as Punch to discover that I, in some small way, share cyberspace with people who have opinions on Montaigne. But really just wanted to thank you, Gail, for those links. I can't wait to employ the phrase "aspirational taste," and I'm pretty sure that "a marriage is its own little civilization" will be worked into at least one of my conversations before the end of the day. Merci!

Gail Gauthier said...

Yes, I rather liked "aspirational taste," too. Montaigne was an aspirational taste for me. Perhaps aspirational tastes should stay just that.