I am a book lover. We have many, many books in our home, and shelves measured in miles, not feet. I have on many occasions proclaimed to family, friends, and random strangers that I will NEVER own an e-reader, because I love the feel of a book in my hands, the smell of paper, the flap copy, for heaven’s sake!
Sugar has always nodded like he understood, and never once argued the point. He had no dog in that fight.
But then I mentioned how we needed another set of bookshelves, perhaps a row in the not-yet-completed family room downstairs. I’m working my way through my to-be-read stack (which has its own bookshelf), and as I add books to existing home-library shelves, they are becoming overstuffed. I don’t have room to work in more books by my favorite authors. Clearly, action must be taken.
But Sugar’s vision for the downstairs room is more “Jimbo’s Tiki Bar” than family room. He did not welcome the suggestion that yet more bookcases might be part of the decor. Still, he didn’t press the point.
Now, next to my books, Sugar knows I love my iPhone. He’s a smart man, and one day he comes home from a company meeting with an iPad. I don’t doubt his story that this is business equipment, necessary for presentations, etc. BUT, I’ll say this: He’s been waving that thing under my nose every chance he gets, showing me one cool app after another.
Then, he started downloading books. He’s already got most of Lee Child’s Jack Reacher series on that gadget. “Look, it’s back-lit,” he says. “I don’t even need a book light.”
For the first few days he had it, he’d demonstrate the fabulosity of the toy, but wouldn’t let me play with it. When he had me in a mad frenzy to try it out, he let me read a few pages. Okay, it had me at “browse, download, read.” I love books, but I’m an instant gratification junkie.
Thinking I would have to talk him into this pricey new toy, I casually said, “You better stop showing that thing off, or you’ll have to buy me one.”
Here’s where he made his mistake. He didn’t protest quite enough. He worked up a weak, “We’ll have to see about that.”
And I knew. I looked at my true love square in the eyes and saw the truth. He had done the math. The iPad was less expensive than more bookshelves. And it would not interfere with his plans for a man cave downstairs.
I have been had. But, hey, I’m getting a new toy. Everybody’s happy at Chez Boyer.