A Book is Like a Garden…

Read any good books lately? Yale University researchers studied senior citizens who read at least 30 minutes every day versus those who don’t, and concluded that after the age of fifty, reading books can contribute to longevity. This is believed to be due to the cognitive process involved; being engrossed in a  book triggers “empathy, social perception, and emotional intelligence.” Newspapers and magazines don’t have the same effect, which suggests that nonfiction isn’t as beneficial to you as fiction.

A book tightly shut is but a block of paper. Chinese proverb

How would you like your public library to be housed on a boat? Or in a trolley, a treehouse, or a telephone booth with or without a working phone? Improbable Libraries, a Visual Journey to the World’s Most Unusual Libraries, by Alex Johnson, shows these and many more out-of-the-ordinary libraries around the world. Bookmobiles include such conveyances as rafts, trams, and camel- and elephant-back. Historical note: Did you know that the WPA paid librarians to use mules, horses, and sometimes rowboats to deliver books to remote areas of Appalachia — traveling as many as 80 miles a week?

A book is like a garden carried in the pocket. Chinese proverb

Okay, all you word-lovers out there, what is the definition of “nonce”? Right, it’s an adjective that means “temporary” or “for the moment.” Hence, a nonce word is an invented word, often one used for one particular occasion. William Faulkner wrote, “the wagon [began] to fall into its slow and mileconsuming clatter.” (My spell check is still grumbling.) Shakespeare was the king of nonce words, inventing more than 1,700 words, including: critical, frugal, lonely, radiance, majestic, summit, excellent, hint, dwindle, submerged…. Of course, his wonderful inventions became permanent fixtures in our language. “Phantom” may not be a nonce word, but one of its definitions is wonderfully inventive: “A sheet or card inserted to mark the place of a book removed from a library shelf, or a document which has been borrowed.”

Anyone who says they have only one life to live does not know how to read a book. Author unknown

*Written by Carol Cail — Read more from Carol at carolcail.com
*Originally published in February 2017

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