Mark Bult Design: San Francisco, CA, Established 1988

Web design and development for small and large business, e-commerce, b2b, b2c, SAAS, and community websites. User experience design and usability testing.

Thursday, June 03, 2004

I like books

Is that such a crime? If you answer yes to that, then your answer is really the crime.

Books are the receptacles of knowledge that keep us a civilized species. Yeah, yeah, we've got the whole Internet thing and all, but c'mon, it's not a book fercryinoutloud. Books are tangible. They are often beautiful in their tangibleness. For example: well designed books, well printed books, or especially old books, and most especially ones that were produced with the care and craftsmanship that is simply a lost art today. Tipped in sheets. Letterpress. Colophons. Ooh, it makes me shudder just to think about it. To run your fingertips across a wonderful, soft sheet of paper and not only feel the pitted texture of the fibers, but to feel the type itself on a letterpress edition. That's a book.

But I like all kinds of books. Not just old ones.

Anyone who's seen my place will attest to this. I have hundreds of books. If I could afford it, I'd have thousands (I'm working on it!).

Fiction books, nonfiction books, design books, old books, new books, softcover, hardcover, first editions, classics, obscure novels, picture books, children's books, they're all great!

I've been cleaning out my dad's attic (since it's mostly my stuff stored up there) since he's planning to sell his house, and I've come across a few boxes of old books from my childhood and young adulthood, and about half of them or more are fantastic things that I want to keep. Golden Books, really old editions of classics like "Little Women" and "Little Men," yellowed Peanuts pocketbooks that I used to read endlessly on summer vacations in Canada, and even some rarities that I might part with, passing them on to collectors on eBay (anyone interested in an early "Star Wars: Empire Strikes Back" comic book?).

What can I say? This is probably one of the most important things I have my mom to thank for. The fact that I'm as smart today is directly attributable to how voracious a reader I've always been, and that's a direct result of the fact that my mom always read to me when I was little and I had dozens of books in my little bedroom nook by the time I was old enough to start reading myself. I remember endless trips to the library when I was a wee tyke.

Plenty of studies have shown a direct correlation between early literacy and later learning competency and whether kids were read to by their parents. I owe a big thanks to mom for this one.

Anyway, in future I intend to start listing some of my favorite books here, not just the tiny "currently reading" list. You've been warned...


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