One of my fantasies involves a picnic lunch in Central Park, under a tree, me in something stylish and slimming, nibbling something french all while being read to by someone British – maybe list man #9. I don’t know, the reader changes depending on my mood, but he’s always British. Anthony Stewart Head British. A lot of my daydreams involve people reading – the Sunday paper in an tellingly disheleveled bed, List Man putting a novel aside in pursuit of *ahem* better things… having time in one day to finish a just started novel…. I was an early reader. I read all the time as a child and young adult. I dig libraries, I own a few books, I peruse magazines now and again. I buy my children books. I have fabrics in my house of books. I want to write and sell books. I dig books. But….
I hate reading outloud. I seriously do, and especially I hate reading children’s books outloud. I do it but I don’t enjoy it. Sometimes I simply have to change the lines or I won’t make it through. For example in the classic abridged board book Go Dogs, Go!! there is a line that I read with particular vigor, “Stop, Dog! Stop! The light is red!” The last line is read in a warning whisper. It’s very dramatic, and then? And then? The next page is an astoundingly disappointing, ‘Go, dog, go. It’s green ahead.’ That’s it? It’s green ahead? Not very satisfying so I changed it. “Stop, Dog! Stop! The light is red! If you go you’ll soon be dead.” ‘Cause I’m edgy like that.
My own pre-reader didn’t appreciate the dark beauty of my morbid rhyme, but my BFF’s six year old son Kirk Douglass giggled, and really, what more validation do I need in my life than the dimpled approval of a six year old boy?