There was a time when buying books was as rare as an April snowstorm.
When I was kid, the library was my favorite place. I’d grab as many books as my tiny hands could carry, pass my card to the librarian, patiently wait for her to scan each book, then sprint back home so I can dive into a new world. We get to keep the books for a couple of weeks at a time. It’s like Netflix without the subscription fee. Well, sometimes I just stay in the library for five hours, reading no more than ten pages of twenty different books and return home empty-handed but certainly not empty-headed.
The library’s every bookworm’s dream, but it’s been years since I’ve borrowed a book. It’s been years since I’ve gone to a library for any purpose other than cramming for a test. I read just as much now as I did back then. The only difference is that the books are now stacked on my own shelves. Or stored in my kindle. Or saved as PDF files on my computer. Yes, many people still borrow books and frequent public libraries, but kids my age want to own everything. I want to own everything. We’re greedy and stingy at the same time. We want free ownership…hence the illegal downloads. I do that for music and movies (unashamedly cuz I’m a horrendous human being) but never for books. Maybe it’s just my prejudice against the Entertainment world, but to me books are the only one of the three that are worth paying for. More than that, ownership of books demand to be paid for.
Yet none of that explains why I’ve stopped going to the library. Truth be told, I’m not so sure of the answer myself. Perhaps it’s because I’m always reading on the go, and borrowing and returning books just became too much of a hassle. Perhaps it’s because I don’t to be reminded of the sappy cringe-worthy romance crap I used to love. Perhaps it’s because every other library has become some favorite hookup location for horny couples. I have absolutely no idea. All I know is that I wouldn’t feel comfortable even if I do visit that little library Browns Bay, New Zealand. The chairs would be too small and the tables too high. Too much has happened for me to return to that place without feeling intrusive.