reading is fundamental

This piece in New York Times talks about how, due to increasing rent and decreasing sales (thanks to online bookstores and digital books), a somewhat iconic Barnes and Nobles store in NYC will be closing its door soon. And some locals are sad to see it go.

Of all the things digital media has threatened to kill or has killed, such as the record stores, movie theaters, and now bookstores, I think the bookstore saddens me the most. Hard to believe, considering how big a film and music guy I am, but still.

I spent many a nights at Borders or Barnes & Nobles in Pasadena during my twenties. It was where I studied (half-assedly), read magazines, and learned how to bowl and play poker (Dan Harrington’s Harrington on Hold’em and about a dozen bowling books).

It was where I bonded with my first love during college; it was where I found peace and spent many a weekends alone after that love ended. I don’t like hanging out with people just for the sake of hanging out, and I’m quite selective about what activities I do. So there were many nights I chose to simply go to Borders by myself instead of, say, just sit around at a friend’s house and shoot the shit.

Outside of basketball, poker, and eating, going to Borders/B&B may have been my favorite activity during my early to mid twenties, since I didn’t drink much and I loathe (still do) clubs.

One of my very best friends in LA likes to go to Borders. Both women I’ve loved also loved going to bookstores. It probably ain’t no coincidence.

With that said, that guy Jai Cha in the story pisses me off. He talks about how sad he is about the bookstore closing, yet he won’t buy BILL SIMMON’S BOOK, which he had been going in to read for free daily.

So not only is he a bandwagon asscat (thanks Sheed for this wonderful term) fake bookstore fan. But he’s a fake basketball fan as well.


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