Sunday, May 01, 2005

Worm Food? Spew Soaker?

There's only one way to look at it: Confession is good for the soul.

After I gave up on that pile of literary suck, ATLAS SHRUGGED, it sat on the table for a few days. Every time I'd pass by, I'd glower down at it. Finally, I realized that no matter how much I enjoyed hating this book, I needed the space there for more important things.

But what should I do with that horrible thing? Fleetingly, I thought of the box of matches I'd gotten from Holiday Inn in Seoul. Yes! I would burn ATLAS SHRUGGED in the kitchen sink! I started for the matches, then, reluctantly, I abandoned the idea. What if the smoke alarm went off? That would be embarrassing.

I needed some time to think of another plan, so I opened the window and stuck that damn putrid thing out on the windowsill. I looked at it and I looked at the windowsill, and I looked at it and I looked at the windowsill. With the tip of my forefinger, I began to nudge ATLAS SHRUGGED off the windowsill. After about 15 tiny nudges, it finally fell onto the ground, next the trees and shrubs below my window.

That was around ten days ago, and it's still there. Rain has fallen several times, and one day, there was a windstorm. ATLAS SHRUGGED is laying there, flipped open by the wind. Page 77.

It's not like me at all to participate in the death and destruction of a book, so I have to admit that I feel daily pangs when I look out and see it still there, a testament to the dark and ugly side of my bookworm nature. A small part of me wants to rescue it because, well, it's a book.

Trying to give it a positive spin, I silently urge the book towards a rapid disintergration. Go on, I think. Let the worms eat you then crap you out. Then you'll be adding wonderful nutrients to the landscaping! Your death/destruction won't have been in vain! Isn't that nice? Unfortunately, at a whopping 1000+ pages, that damn book isn't going to be worm crap anytime soon. [Note: The proper name for worm poop is "castings", BTW.]

So there it is:
A) I won't touch it again,
B) no one will come and retrieve it,
C) it won't be considerate and hurry up and disintergrate!

Yesterday afternoon, I heard a peculiar but familiar sound outside the open window. Looking out, I saw a young man in a (w)retched state, down on his hands and knees by the little stone wall that separates the sidewalk from the landscaping. He was vomiting to beat the band. I declined to watch after the first alcohol-scented spew, but I did make a note that his projectile range was nowhere near the copy of ATLAS SHRUGGED.

I shook my head regretfully.
Damn, too bad.

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