Saturday, October 25, 2008

That Raucous Festival of Reading

Well, I'm off to the Festival of Reading in about an hour. I think it's from nine or ten to four or five. I know it's down at the USF campus. Check it out.

I can't say I like the name of the event. It sounds awfully boisterous for the sedate action of reading.

I'll be there with Liz Armstrong and her daughter Anne Fussell and the book The Little Bastard Won't Bite ... and everything else your pet sitter needs to know. I tried to upload the poster I made, telling all who view it that the book is the perfect holiday gift. Alas. It's too big to upload. Or something. So just close your eyes and envision the perfect holiday gift in the form of The Little Bastard Won't Bite ...

Years and years ago, I went to my friend Pam's partment and read a Stephen King short story while she and our friend Jim watched some football game. When it was over, they cooked a meal, and while they finished off the dessert I brought, I read King's short story to them, about quitting smoking. They were still smoking. I had attained that spiritual superiority that calls for the cessation of smoking. It was the first time I'd read out loud to adults. I couldn't believe the great reception. We all loved it.

One of my fondest fantasies is to gather with dear friends in a cozy house in mid-December, and take turns reading aloud from A Christmas Carol. I think it would take about three hours, not counting breaks for cocoa and cookies. Those who don't like to read would be there, enjoying being read to, dangling prepositions getting a special holiday dispensation.

But back to Pam and Jim ... Half a year later, when they moved into a whole house with a third person and had a house warming, I brought along that same book. We used one of the bedrooms, with people cluttered up on the floor, listening while I read. If someone bumbled into the room, s/he was shushed. It was amazing and wonderful.

Surely "amazing" and "wonderful" sound like a festival? Well, then, party on, all ye rowdy readers!


skymetalsmith said...

Hey Barbara, What was the title of that S. King short story?

Barbara said...

King's short story is called "Quitters, Inc." Muawhawhawhaw!