Sobriquet 77.2

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As an English professor, I am almost always in the middle of a book and the amount of reading my career requires is one of the great joys of my job, but it's also the source of one of the great ironies in my life: no matter how much I read in preparation for my classes, I never feel like I'm reading enough. Part of the feeling stems from the fact that, as my thesis advisor once told me, one's reading list never grows shorter. Another part of the feeling, of course, stems from the fact that the time and energy I spend reading and re-reading the various texts I teach in my classes leaves me with less time and energy to pursue pleasure reading. As much as I would like to be able to read all day, I rarely find that I can sustain the level of attentiveness I demand of myself for such literary marathons. When I read, I like to focus as completely as possible on the text in front of me, savoring each word and processing the ideas as fully as I can. Put differently, I feel like I am cheating both the author and myself if I read a text with anything less than my fully-charged and undistracted mind. Needless to say, those hours of peak mental performance are limited and, after a long day of class preparation, scholarship, and paper-grading, I rarely feel sharp enough to devote my full attention to a book I really want to read. And that sucks. 

Since I have been experiencing this unpleasant feeling more intensely these past few weeks, I have decided to use what little energy I have left at the end of each day to read something for myself, even if I can only manage a few pages. So, with this resolution in mind, I'm about to head for bed, but I'm reading a little bit of Kurt Vonnegut's The Sirens of Titan before I turn out the lights.

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This page contains a single entry by Sobriquet Magazine published on November 8, 2011 11:14 PM.

Sobriquet 77.1 was the previous entry in this blog.

Sobriquet 77.3: On Punks and Academia is the next entry in this blog.

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