According to iBooks, I own 253 books. That does not include the reference books, like Thesauruses, Dictionaries, parenting books, and palmistry books. It also does not include the dozen or so of cookbooks or the text books I plan to read one day. (Ink: In my defense, I only dropped lit crit because the original professor, who believed you can only understand it through doing it in one massive paper, grew very ill and had to drop teaching, only to be replaced by a pompous ass, but I swear I’ll read the book.) Nor does it include several titles that the system says does not exist. (Honestly does any one not read graphic novels!) This does not include the fifty or so books that belong to my husband, who will NOT reread his texts books. It does not include the large amount of children’s books that I haven’t gotten around to counting yet.
But this large library, and counting, does make it difficult to move, especially when the owner realizes she might not need every title in the next year. So the night after The Decision, I began to fill small boxes with as many books as I could back. As I packed the books, I typed out the title of each book, making a list to tape to the top of the box. And the system worked well until I ran out of boxes, and you just wouldn’t believe how hard it is to dumpster dive with two little ones. They tend to want to bring home unsavory objects or cut themselves on syringes. (Kidding. Kidding. You throw them in to fetch.)
Without boxes, I began to worry about the horrible mess of letting someone just heap books into boxes and not being able to find my very favorites when I needed them. I did what any good wife would do; I nagged my husband. During the times he didn’t tune me out, he suggested I get rid of some books. I am, thank you very much, and I do, but I keep everything I will read again, and I do. Then he would rant about how I had too many, and I would remind him why I have so many. Soon I wished he had ignored me like usual.
There is a reason for the large library other than my intense love for the written word. Years ago when my husband and I were just shacking up, we combined our moneys early because we were engaged. As the honeymoon was over, my husband would leave to hang out with his buddies, which wasn’t a big deal, except I was young, bored, and had few friends that stayed in the area after they graduated. After several stupid arguments, I came up with a brilliant plan. Believing that a lot of my grief was because I was a saver and he was a spender, I decided that every time he went out drinking, I would go to the bookstore. At first, he was against the plan, saying “You’re never going to read those books again; it’s a waste of money.” “Well, you’re never going to drink those beers again; at least I have something to show for spending the money.” Then I went to the bookstore.
In the end, I had to give up writing all the titles on the boxes and move on to just writing the type of books, like religious or parenting. I had one box marked with my favorites. Written on top of the box was “Favorite books; lose this box and I own your soul.” They were in the office waiting for me when I arrived and were the first ones on the book shelves. Of course, there’s a huge possibility that I’m going to have to move the bookcase. Damn.