Confessions of a bookworm
Posted On June 16, 2021
by Shenali Boteju
We all have some crazy quirks that we might be reluctant to share with just anyone, unless it’s with a best friend or a parent.
What if people came together to be more open about their peculiarities to help ‘normalize’ them? I write an exclusive ‘bookworm’ version on the normalization of eccentricity, so let’s dive right into it without further ado.
- The Book Sniffer.
In my opinion, this is one of the most common of all quirks shared by book lovers around the world. What kind of bookworm could ever resist the urge to crack open a fresh, store-bought book and take a whiff of that aroma seeping between the pages? Most are not privy to the knowledge that books do emit a scent that is the result of the breakdown of chemicals within the paper, which is an instant affinity to someone who has spent a lot of time reading. So, the next time you see someone sneak a sniff off a book, do keep this in mind.
- Pillow Reading
At some point in our brief moment as a toddler, did we not have a favourite soft toy or doll that we absolutely would not allow to be separated from? We would be so attached to it that we wouldn’t even go to bed without it. The same is true for most bookworms, except the same level of comfort that’s derived by a toy, would be brought by a book. I confess to having slept with a book under my pillow or having it tucked next to me.
I cannot tell you how many times I have been lectured by my parents (and by my subconscious) to stop spending on books when I already have an alarmingly growing pile of unread books sitting on my bookshelf looking pretty as a picture. There is no logical explanation here really, except that no amount of books would ever be truly enough. I wouldn’t call myself an impulsive buyer, but all self-control is out the window the minute I stroll into a bookstore.
There is no such thing as a bad book. I believe that when you pick up a book, there is a ‘spark’ or a connection, and when that connection feels right, you know it’s the right book for you. However, once in a while, a bookworm might encounter the dilemma of selecting a book where they might have mistakenly imagined the ‘spark’. In cases like that, a true bookworm would do everything they possibly can to finish the book, determined not to give up on it halfway through, for fear of hurting the book’s feelings. I know I have.
- Obsessive Owner
How many of you fellow bookworms out there have experienced the pain of parting with a book when you couldn’t say no to a good friend who requested to borrow it? There was a time when I lent my copy of ‘The ‘Time Traveler’s Wife’ to a friend of mine who kept delaying to return the book. I was so anxious that I would never see my precious book again, I turned up at her house one day to collect it back. Once I had it safely within my grasp, I went through it to make sure that there were no dog-eared pages or any damage to the book spine.
These are just a few of the known quirks of many bookworms, and there are dozens more that are kept hidden away in closets. My message is ‘be free in your madness!’ Your quirks are what makes you unapologetically you.