I have a bad habit of dog-earing pages in a book – pages with a line that I want to remember later. The librarians have started to give me suspicious looks, but at least I am not writing in the margins – maybe I should. A recent article in the New York Times – Book Lovers Fear Dim Future for Notes in Margins – discusses the added value of books read by Mark Twain, Darwin, Coleridge, even Nelson Mandela in recent times – just because they wrote their thoughts in the book they were reading – hard to do with an e-book.
“Pardon the egg salad stains, but I’m in love.”
Reading someone else’s reaction to the printed word sometimes feels like illicitly peeking into their thoughts. But, what if those greasy words resonate and carry the meaning of the page to another level of understanding? A mysterious conversation with the last reader of the book – one that will remain secret.
I can still see Sister Eugene Marie ready to admonish me for “destroying property” but maybe next time I’m tempted to dog-ear, I’ll just write a note (in pencil, of course).
- Book Lovers Fear Dim Future for Notes in the Margins (nytimes.com)