Book(E)d

I love my Pad but hate the E-Book. Being in love with the Pad and the Tab is normal, what else can you expect from an eccentric gadget freak like me and so, the E-Book should have been the greatest thing since sliced bread. But when it comes to Books, there seems to be a paradox of sorts getting me. I hardly accept anything that I don’t see reason with and obviously set about pondering for reasons.
As a hardcore gadget freak I suppose I should have applauded the rise of the e-book in all its amazing avathar, but somehow, I am in love with the ‘Touch & Feel’ of the paperback, the awesome smell of fresh, crisp paper. I like the fact that I can snooze off at night, leaving the open pages on my chest and pick it up from where I left when I wake up. I love the fact that there’s no charging the real book (more important, not carry an assortment of chargers on even a short travel) and if preserved well, will last a few centuries – think of something like that on an e-book or a Kindle. . .

Honestly, the ‘Real Books’ take up quite a bit of precious real estate at home (a sparse commodity in the metros), especially when you are talking of a figure nearing the thousand and the argument would be one e-book or a kindle would save all that space, making me richer by the thousands (by rent) every month. Yet, the sheer joy of a well-stocked / stacked bookshelf in your room (den) is something that money can’t buy. . .
Real Books make great personalized gifts and your personal note and signature would probably be treasured by the person at the other end for sheer sentimental value. Similarly, while reading the book, you get to scribble your notes and views on the margin and maybe half a century later, it would be an immense trip down memory lane. Yes, you can do the same in the electronic version, yet, somehow it simply does not stand up to those intrinsic human values and experiences provided by the real thing.

Now for the real paradox. As an ardent wild life photographer and a lover of the wilds, i know the raw material behind the paper is a precious tree. I do know that addition of books on my shelf is a direct carbon footprint impact on nature, yet, the book in its art form, clouds the mind from reasoning and ends up rationalizing the issue. I am trying hard to comprehend with this paradox .
Spending time at Higginbotham’s, Landmark, Odyssey or a CLS book shop (good old book shop at Coimbatore) are probably memorable moments in life and would remain etched in my memory. Later on in life, when I take a trip down memory lane, I’d enjoy reliving every moment of it. Until then, the Pad and Tab can still do my mails and browsing. But for reading – it has to be my books . . .

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