Bedside Reading


Posted on June 30, 2009 by Blake Leath

With the recent celebration of our 16th wedding anniversary, followed immediately by the occurrence of Father's Day, I have a whole wallet stuffed with Barnes & Noble gift cards.  One of the 'givers' inquired, "What did you buy?"

In response to her, and a client this morning who asked, "What are you 'bedside reading' these days?" I offer this brief defense.

The table is spilling over with magazines: The Week, Inc., and Time -- to stay abreast of 'the serious issues.'  And I've got a couple issues of Entertainment Weekly, for those moments before take-off when my mind wants empty calories rather than world events.  There are undoubtedly moments when I cannot bear to read 'heavy stuff.'

I also purchased an assortment of interesting books, a couple new ones and a classic.  A Different Life by Quinn Bradlee looks promising.  A young man with VCFS who has memoir'ed his journey as a learning-disabled student, son, and friend.  I love the dedication page, "To my mom -- my archangel, and my father, who is my sword and shield."  We should only be so appreciated.  Losing Mum and Pup by Christopher Buckley, about his inimitable parents and their respective deaths in 2007-2008.  A loving tribute from a complicated son.  All the King's Men by Pulitzer Prize winner, Robert Penn Warren.  A classic, and more timely than ever, even 63 years later.  Finally, I've got an Idiot's Guide to Latin beside the bed because it has always fascinated me and I don't want my brain jell-o-ing to mush.  To keep a muscle, you gotta use it!

It'd be nice to be one of those folks who grows younger as he grows older (more curious, more free, more fun), rather than the other way around (less curious, less free, less fun)!  (Sort of a Benjamin Button, if you will, minus the drool and diapers at each life-endpoint.)

Keep the recommendations coming; I'll read all I can.  As a great mentor, Carveth Kramer, once said to me, "Leaders are readers" or, at least, they should be.