Something to Read

I am looking for something to read. I know what I want to read, but you’d think I’m crazy. There’s a book in Japanese that I want. I can’t read the words, but the store that sells it also provides a guide. I could be cocky and say ‘I’m so good that I can read Japanese after reading an 8 page booklet’, but then you’d think I was quite full of myself or bs. It would be hard to choose, if it were me on the other side.

But what I want to read, is not the words written on the pages, although a translation would be nice. I want to read the charts. They are knitting charts, over 400 of them. I’m looking for something, and I know this book has more than just one something I want.

So what’s the ‘big’? The book is $90 plus S&H. Worth it, no doubt. 8 years ago, I spent $84 on an Azerbaijani/Georgian, first edition love story. I deplored the cost, but the cultural references were invaluable. I also happen to love the fact that there’s an inscription from someone to someone else. That book has a history beside the story. Back then, I was making my own money, to save or waste. I could eat Ramen to make up for it. Now, with a family, it is a bit harder. I’ll save part of my allowance for that book, use some on my coffee habit, and the rest goes for yarn or gifts. It’s not that I don’t want it, could use it, and would feast off of its pages. It is that some things are more important, than right now.

But itches. This desire. All exacerbated by reading the news today.

I’ve given up on reading fiction for now. It doesn’t do what it used to do for me. I read the news, and the disgust it engenders only dampens the fix for information need. I read the BBC and CNN news sites. I know that CNN is liberal. That doesn’t bother me. I am educated enough to read thru the rhetoric. The BBC provides the international news, as well as a view of American news from a different viewpoint.

I could criticize the American public for their ignorance of international concerns, but it’s not worth it. They won’t even make sure that every child can read, or feed their own homeless. I doubt they even know what foreign aid is. I know they understand gas prices, but not necessarily the correlation between the two. Maybe I should go interview Joe Schmoe and see if he understands why the Arab Spring is such a big deal.

I found myself wanting to whoop and holler about a bombing. Me, the person who hates to read about car bombs, deaths, protesters being beaten. I cheered for this one bombing. David struck Goliath. It was a beginning parry. It was a step that could only have been done by that David in a world full of Goliaths. This was a bombing meant to save lives. It was an action taken, not in retaliation or aggression, but in prevention. While the rest of the world dithers and fails to act in so many situations, allowing hundreds of thousands to millions of deaths of innocent civilians. David said “Not us. Not our people, and not yours”.

The article I read, did not have a casualty count. If there were some, and there probably were, I mourn them. But the lives that won’t be lost, those I rejoice.

Do I sound like a fanatic? Cheering for Team David? After all, there is no gain for me. It doesn’t affect me or mine. Not in the now. In the absence of anything good to read, I’ve been watching the world. I can look at the facts presented, and the patterns I’ve been watching for almost 2 decades. It’s ******ing depressing. It is almost, sometimes, encouraging.

Change is painful. The world is growing and dying, and the people around me are oblivious. All of the people I could discuss this with are on the other side of the country. The debates, long nights of coffee and booze, fueling the educated debates of where the U.S. and other countries were going. We’d speak in several different languages, each debating their own point, backing it up with this or that article or report.

We weren’t the poly-sci guys. We weren’t lawyers. We were a good-looking, little rough crowd of scholars who will never be accepted into The world of Academia. We watched the world, but the world couldn’t watch us.

When I try to discuss these things with the people in the world around me, all I get in return, are the blank stares of the unknowing. I’m just a housewife. My world is small.

So yes, I want that Japanese book. It promises challenges that this, now solo flyer, can enjoy by herself. It has no wars, no battles or bombers. No flying through space on the back of a winged horse. No lovely little love affairs before or after divorce. No cancer or deaths. Just endless patterns of meaningless knots that end in something beautiful. Music for the fingers and the eyes. Peace and Harmony.

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