A Weird Thing Happened to Me on the Way to the Bookstore

I never thought the day would come when I would say this but… I have no desire to buy books anymore.

Now let me make this clear: I have no intention of not reading anymore nor have I picked up any shoplifting habit or anything like that but at some point in the past couple of years I just got tired of having so much stuff.

I love my bookshelves laden with their tomes, reflective of my travels, experiences, zeitgeists of my soul at the time of consumption, strewn with bookmarks and placeholder’s like that lovely boy’s business card or a forgotten receipt and other skinny trinkets.

I think that I, like many people of my generation, have become very attune to the need to go back to basics, to a simpler lifestyle, one that respects our planet and environment – where space, time, and ethics are valued commodities. Meanwhile, this need is simultaneously juxtaposed with a desire to partake in cutting edge, innovative technology and its fruitful gadgetry.

I’ve become obsessed with platforms like Tumblr or Google+ where I can feed my need for real time news and  connect to a global network of friends, peers and yes, strangers too instantly from a stream of content.

At home, my ipad has become my bedtime companion, replacing my books, laptop, where I stream my Netflix, and cable shows, where I play words with friends, and habitually check Flipboard for interesting content or my email.

I see the tired headlines and hear the battle cries of the booksellers and publishing industry. I have only one thing to say: Innovate or die. People will always read. They will always consume knowledge. How and with what, may be the only factors that come into play here. MTV didn’t kill the radio star, it made gave them a face. Apple didn’t reinvent music but it sure affected the music industry and the consumption of music.

As a consumer, one who has always loved books and collected the paper kind, I know I really don’t want to continue to buy physical books at the pace I used to – I simply cannot for a triad of reasons: money, space, and lack of convenience and need.

It’s so much easier and enjoyable for me to devour a book quickly in one sitting, on my ipad – going to a bookstore and wandering aisles browsing and peeking into books with interesting covers has just become a luxury that I simply do not have the time for or the budget for…

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