True Review
Current Issue Number 97 Vol.31 July 2016
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
   
Reading religiously

Hardly anybody reads anymore.

Except me.

I read the Reading Eagle every day, along with the Wall Street Journal. The rest of my reading includes Bloomberg Businessweek, Fortune, the Central Penn Business Journal, the Lehigh Valley Business Journal, the Philadelphia Business Journal, the Lititz Record-Express, the Hershey-Hummelstown Sun, Locus Magazine, and much more. I read them religiously.

Want to know some statistics?

Jordan Weissmann reported some time ago in The Atlantic, in “The Decline of the American Book Lover,” about a Pew Research Center report that nearly a quarter of American adults had not read a single book in the past year. As in, they hadn't cracked a paperback, fired up a Kindle, or even hit play on an audiobook while in the car. The number of non-book-readers has nearly tripled since 1978.

(See http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2014/01/the-decline-of-the-american-book-lover/283222/)

Interesting statistic from Weissmann’s article, and I quote: The number of books an American reads tends to be closely associated with his or her level of education. Even those with just a little bit of college read far more, on average, than men and women who only finished high school, according to Weissmann. That may be because people who grow up reading are far more likely to enroll in higher education. But it seems at least somewhat likely that reading books in class conditions people to read books later in life, he noted.

The number of books I have read in my lifetime: 6,000. Perhaps more.

And I am just scratching the surface of what I should be reading.

I respond to reading the way Harlan Ellison wrote about writing: you write because it is therapy and you will go crazy if you don’t. So I read to avoid going bonkers. It’s purely an emotional thing.

Reading is yoga and a reason for being. It is my way of centering but also provides a way to escape a mundane world full of mundane stresses with a promise that there is something other than this, a world of labor and bills. There has to be something other than labor and bills, there just has to be.

Andrew M. Andrews


 

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