And I'm a little worried it's the latter.
Back in the day. Way back in time when I had time - and room in my brain - for reading, I looked down my book snob nose at people who read fluffy books. My grandmother, for example - who worked two jobs and had nine kids - read a lot of romance novels. I never understood it.
With age comes stress and possibly a little wisdom.
I see that for her - and now for me - reading couldn't be something she put her full heart into. I don't have the luxury right now to run away with reading. And when I try to read books that will make me think? I find my eyes glazing over and all of a sudden I'm lesson planning instead of reading and thinking.
Chad - from Fiction is So Overrated and I decided (if decided means I stalked him down, emailed him, and made him agree because I think he's cool) to read some books together. He chose our first selection: The Tiger's Wife.
While Chad is awesome, I did not find The Tiger's Wife to be as awesome. It was kind of like when my young adult book club read an adult book and I picked Claire Messud's latest because I love her and she is fabulous and then I hated the book. Sad.
Now. Get ready. I'm about to get scientific, because I really need to figure out why I didn't like this book.
Later - post reading - I found out Tiger's Wife is the new hotness book that everyone thinks people should read. We know I hate those books on priciple. However, Chad and I had a pact not to research our book selections. So I didn't know, which means I wasn't tainted by my snobbery against books Oprah and Amazon and my feminist book store tell me I should read.
It wasn't my snobbery. But was it my teaching brain?
I tried to like it. I really did. Parts were beautifully written and poignant, but I couldn't stay focused. It was the kind of book where you are reading along and all of a sudden you are on a tangent, which is followed by tangent off of the tangent, and by the time you look up you're like: I don't care in the slightest why this town only has one gun and who brought it here - shoot the stupid tiger already.
And I love tigers.
It reminded me of A. S. Byatt's The Children's Book. And I hated that book before I started teaching.
Perhaps there are remnants of my brain left intact. Perhaps I can still find joy in books that don't have fighting sequences to keep me awake.
There's hope for me yet.
"Is your heart a sponge or a fist?"