Monday, March 26, 2012

You Choose

I just got done with The Elegance of the Hedgehog, which is  definitely one of those titles that's better in French (c.f., La Vie en Rose, Les Miserables).  L'Elegance du Herisson has a lovely lilt; The Elegance of the Hedgehog sounds like....hedgehogs.  Dressing up.  For hedgehog prom.

It's not a book I would have chosen for myself, is the point.  I mean, I suppose if it were a choice between hedgehogs and literary theory I'd say bring on the spikes, but given free rein...

And that's just it: Free rein is all mine.  We live, these days in a world of I-choose.  Businesses and even government figures compete to give me more of what I want, when I want it.  On-demand TV.  Radio tailored to my likes.  Ads micro-targeted to me, me, me.  Even books: Amazon dangles books under my nose based on what I've read before.

Which is where Book Club comes in.  In Book Club, rather than choosing my own adventure, I'm thrust into someone else's.  Coincidentally, this is the best part of reading: being plunged, forcibly, into someone else's world.  If we always choose for ourselves, how can we ever move beyond ourselves?

And so I meet hedgehogs, and elegance, half a world away from my couch.

Anyone else want to choose what I read?

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