Unrepentant book-hoarder here…

book-hoarderYou can generally rely on the Gruaniad for an occasional dose of tiresome, smug whinyarsery and this week’s is just in. It’s baaaaaaad to have a lot of books, you can’t have read them all, you’re just being ‘middle class’ (as though you can help what kind of household you were born and raised in).

I have a lot of books because fuck you, I like books. I don’t consider it an indication of any particular superiority any more than having big feet or preferring milder curries to really hot ones. Most book-lovers and book-hoarders are fairly used to being sneered at from time to time by those who insist that reading is an uncool sort of hobby – my least favourite customer when I’m out at a market is the one who feels a need to tell me that they don’t read, don’t like fiction and that surely no one else really reads books any more – and there are more than enough of these people. There are way more than enough people who like to wank on about what minimalists they are, and how this makes them somehow purer and more spiritual than those of us who like to have our favourite things around us – *never* trust people who lecture you about being too attached to your possessions. What they mean is they are going to nick (‘borrow’) your things without asking, lose or wreck them and then tell you it’s all your fault.

Sure, many of the books I seek out and buy are those I intend to sell to other people, and no, I haven’t (these days) read every word of every book I stock. I trade some titles that I don’t particularly care for, as it happens: fiction that doesn’t do much for me but which others enjoy, guides to specific kink stuff that isn’t my thing, but I don’t consider policing others’ tastes as part of my job.

I did have to throw away a book this evening – but that’s because something got spilt on it and it has grown mould. That has happened about three times in my entire life. I don’t expect a medal for it.

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