1.03.2011

Status check on the Memory reading list

Oscar has taken to sleeping in a box by the door.
I finished reading Man Walks into a Room the other day... and BOY WAS THAT GOOD. I won't go into a book review here, but I will say that that's definitely been the easiest book to read for the Memory project. I can roll through fiction with the best of them.

Unfortunately for the other books, not so much. I haven't known how to break this to you all... but some of the books I picked for the syllabus suck. One of them super-sucked. And at first I was all "heyyy you have to read these! It's a CLASS. There's no crying in self-made schools!"

And then I gave myself a freaking break.

He is in danger of being recycled!
Because you know what? It is also valuable to know what books super-suck. Why? So you don't waste your time on them. There are way too many wonderful books in the world to waste your bedtime or subway time or sitting-on-a-park-bench-time reading crud.

And can I say something a bit blasphemous? Oliver Sacks is brilliant... and I hate his books. I hate them! I am convinced that I love them for the first chapter and then I just get really irritated that there are no stories in them, but just case study after case study. "SO WHAT?" I want to say to him. "SO WHAT that many different brain things happen to many different people, Oliver??"

Last night he snuggled me through cardboard.
He never answers that question. Just plows into a totally unrelated study about a man who hears music all the time in his head and can control the volume at will. It feels very one-trick pony, like as soon as you get to the "huhhhh..." moment of the chapter, it's over and he moves onto another amazingly rare case of memory/music brain crazies.

This is particularly disappointing because my friend Sarah Mclo read The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat about 3 or 4 years ago and loved it... and somehow in my mind, I imagined that to be this incredible book of fiction that I was saving up for a rainy day to read and savor. Imagine my surprise when it turned out to be a non-fiction chunk of case studies. So maybe I built the hype up there. Maybe.

Other than the O. Sacks books, the super-suck was Losing my Mind by Thomas DeBaggio. Listen guys, I really wanted to read a heartfelt memoir by a person with Alzheimer's. I had the tears stored up for weeks in my tear ducts, ready to openly sob at any given chapter. And (all due respect), I could only make it through one chapter of this book because it was totally confusing and not coherent. The super-suck.

The good news is that I have been very faithful to the syllabus other than these 3 books. I have an awesome post coming soon about computer memory (really- you will love it!) and some answers to the questions I posed at the beginning of the semester. Plus, there's still that memory gift coming... is it for you? Whaddaya think?

3 comments:

Steve said...

Careful, Oscar's cousin had a box JUST like that for a little under a year...and then he peed in it.

ev said...

i can barely stand those pictures. i can just imagine him strolling over to the box and climbing in...

Garima said...

grt