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Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Letting Go is Never Easy

Statistically speaking, I'm probably closer to the end of my life than the beginning, unless the nanotech revolution gets here before I shuffle off this mortal coil. Since that's unlikely, I find myself taking more and more time to consider the amount of clutter in my life and whether having a library stuffed full of books is really making me happy.

I do love having a library, but because I have so many books it's really more of a storage closet than a place to read and relax. So, prompted by a discussion with Sean, I've decided to prune my collection even more deeply than before. Today I filled a large Rubbermaid container with books, destined for the Wee Book Inn or one of the Little Libraries in the Oliver community, or perhaps the Cross Cancer Institute.

It wasn't easy to do this. Some of the volumes I put in that container have been with me since the 1980s. But since I'm only reading a little over 100 books a year, what are the odds that I'll read these books again? Almost nil.

It's still hard. Each book tells a story beyond that contained within its pages; it also tells a story about the reader, where and who I was when I first turned those pages, now yellowing.

But why try to preserve memory when I won't be remembered more than a decade or so after my death - if even that? Why not instead try to enjoy the new more fully?

Profundities aside, I'd be pretty happy if I can cull enough books to add a nice easy chair and maybe a gaming table to the room. 

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