Stack o’ Books


I recently attended a retirement party and it made me think of your responses to my post about reading anywhere and any time.

One of the speakers (that sounds too much like a work convention)…speech makers (hmm, that doesn’t really work either, but you get the point) said something about how John “Retiree” Doe would now have plenty of time to read that stack of books he’s been trying to get around to. This sentiment seems to be a running theme at retirement parties.

My suspicion is that if you couldn’t make time to read while you worked, you aren’t going to enjoy it when you’re retired. After all, if you couldn’t find the time, you probably didn’t really love reading. I’m not saying I expected this guy to read while brushing his teeth, but he couldn’t pick up a novel on the train?

Actually, the more I think about it, the more insulting it is. Now that the real work is done, he can do less important things like reading?


6 thoughts on “Stack o’ Books

  1. bethfinke

    Point taken. I’ve been telling myself for months (years?) that I need to sit down at the piano and play more often. “Maybe when I have more time.” I have *plenty* of time now. Ashamed to admit, but I think I like my computer more than my piano.
    In terms of this retirement speech, interesting that it wasn’t the retiree that said this, but the person who introduced him. Maybe the introducer is the one who needs to read more books.

      • bethfinke

        Probably not. But I *did* just sign up for a three-day “Summer Jazz Camp” for adults. It’s sponsored by the Jazz Institute of Chicago this July – that oughta shame me into practicing!

  2. Kim

    Back when I worked in a cardiovascular research lab, there was a lot of “quiet” time. We WERE working, just waiting for tests to run, cultures to incubate, phone calls to be returned. I spent that time reading–I read work related stuff first but often I read fiction. I felt guilty and ashamed. Then one day, the big boss walked in with a stack of Tom Clancy novels. He handed them to me with a smile and said, “I’ve noticed the books on your desk and I think you’ll really like this author. I also have the brand new Dick Frances novel and I’ll drop it by when I’m finished.” Validation! He was an avid reader, knew that my work was done well and finished on time, and he shared my love of books. A great boss!

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