Posts Tagged ‘spouse’

Book Wars

My wife and I have a book fetish- we love books. Correspondingly we love to read. We surround ourselves with books. Our bedroom, in part because I’ve not put up any bookshelves, has stacks of books on the floor next to the bed, on the bedside tables, the desk. Books we’ve read; books we may never read but were intrigued by, and books we plan to read but haven’t got to yet (we try to isolate the latter, they breed like rabbits). There are few empty shelves, spaces not yet stacked with books, more due to budget limitations than to lack of effort on our part.


I would guess, in the number of books we have, that there isn’t one that both my wife and I have read (excluding Go Dog Go, Horton Hears a Who, and a slew of other juvenile varieties). We both recommend books to each other, but out of spite, or independence, we never read a book recommended by the other. It has become an unwritten rule in our house. I’ve come to wonder what this means about our relationship, if anything, and what it would mean if it were to change.


It could be a tug-o-war of wills- we are both incredibly stubborn people, and not in the least more than a little passive-aggressive.


Which of us will break first? Will I read one of her recommendations, or will she read one of mine? And will that offer of reconciliation begin a series of rhetorical readings, giving us literary experiences to discuss and share. Will it make us grow closer, more in tune with each other’s thoughts and experiences, or drive us apart, exposing that we aren’t as alike as we like to think we are. Maybe we aren’t on the same page after all.


Financially it would prove fruitful, we could each expand our library of unread material by approximately half…., bookstores be damned. Our bank account would flourish and we could buy some shelves to stack those books on.


It could be a difference in tastes. Is that allowed? Maybe we like different things, and books are that one item we don’t really have to compromise on- like the color of the living room, or vacation with her family or mine, or God-forbid a Disney cruise.


Perhaps a kind of Freudian logic can explain our book conflict. Each book we read could be an illicit affair, a relationship private and protected from the spouse we share practically everything with. Reading the other’s book choices might be like walking into your bedroom, only to discover your spouse with a lover, somebody fulfilling those desires you can’t yourself.


Thank god she doesn’t read romances, or they might find me, balancing on a stack of books, with a rope in one hand and a book of knots in the other.


Then again…..


Honey, get the checkbook; we’re going to Gulliver’s (book store in Fairbanks).




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