24 May 2011

Book Sorting

Today we've been sorting and cleaning books, then dividing into three piles: keep; store; give to the next Lions International book sale.  It's a wonderful feeling finding 'old friends' which had been hidden behind the huge pot plant for the past three years.  
What I do wonder, however, is whether books are now out of date, now we can access all the info we need from the internet or store books on iPad/Kindle.  
Or will books always have a place in our lives: the feel of a book in one's hand, the smell of old dust, being able to turn down the corners, being able to make notes in the margins and underline important bits.


  1. Hi Jenny I spend a lot of time thinking about books, please explain to me the difference between books to keep and to store? I think books are a great invention, they will be part of our life for a long time. This will happen because they have inimitable properties. One day maybe they will become obsolete. But until the time the new technological systems (eg Kindle) don’t need energy to work books will be useful. A book works because it’s still simple. And mother nature proves simple organisms like viruses can exist for many and many years with no modification, because they work. This makes me think while books work they will be a part of our life. But probably less people will appreciate them because modern life creates all time more things to steal our time and then books will become something like to write with pen and paper, or to play piano, or to fight with sword. Books will still be part of the lives of people who like to be classic and for those who think the past isn’t discardable.

  2. Hi Felipe
    To store means downloading a book onto Kindle/iPad etc, whereas to keep means, in my case, a whole wall of books in our living room and various bookcases around the house.
    I agree with what you say, there's also the pleasure of actually holding a book and browsing through it at random.
    I especially enjoy a book which belonged to someone else a long time ago. For instance, somewhere (I can't find it this minute) I have the Bible which my Great Grandfather owned and he used when he was a Lay Preacher in the Methodist Church. Also there's a reference book which my mother used when she was training as a nurse, way back in the 1940s. This won't change and cannot be replaced by what you call technological systems.
    I agree with you that modern life creates more and more things to steal our time but as human beings I think we will always get great satisfaction from creating something, be it making bread, growing flowers, looking at trees/hills/sky. Perhaps it's inside us, when I think that my Grandfather was a farmer, father was a fisherman at one time, many members of my (our!) family have cooked, gardened, painted, made clothes. I just hope that these skills and interests don't get lost down the generations, for instance: my mother taught me to make a very good liver and bacon dinner - but Fi's vegetarian and Vicky doesn't like liver! Ah well! But I do hope they'll carry on and enjoy at least some of these skills. Does Fi still draw and paint? I do hope so. I definitely think the past is not discardable - after all, someone once said that those who ignore the lessons of the past are condemned to make the same mistakes (or something like that).
    I'm glad you've become a 'follower' - sounds like Jesus ...

  3. One day, Felipe, I'll be able to write a long comment to you in Portuguese - but until that time I'm very glad you're able to write so well in English.