I just finished Anansi Boys even though it arrived on my door step months ago. I’ll be honest with you, my job has broken something in me, ruined my love of reading like a fingernail in my chicken salad wrap ruined Arbys for me.
I have a hard time reading for pleasure any more, of seeing someone else’s words as something to be enjoyed instead of problems to be solved.
Today, it was wet and cold and rainy and I had already spent my last five dollars buying dinner for the Butcher the evening before, and so I was sitting at the computer, feeling something, a kind of old urge, and it took me a long time to recognize it. So, I played on the computer some and I crocheted some and I did some dishes and scratched the dog’s belly and still…
And then I realized, I wanted to read a book.
It was the kind of day you could devote to reading a book and not feel like there was something else you should be doing and so I read a book.
And the part of me trained to ask “What can I do to fix this?” was mostly too lazy to get in the way of my reading.
I talked to the recalcitrant brother today. He just called to shoot the shit and I was glad to hear from him. We talked a long time about how few folks are calling electricians and how many houses are sitting empty and about how high his blood pressue is but he can’t afford the medicines the doctor thinks he should take.
I told him that I was eating crackers for breakfast after having spent… well, I told him what I told you. He laughed at me long and hard, asked if I was kidding, and then laughed again.
We had a similar conversation before I went up to my dad’s, when he remarked about how bad he felt that he was too broke to get up there for the surgery.
I was telling the Professor about it because I said that I couldn’t tell if he wanted me to commiserate or if he was hinting.
Same thing with the conversation today.
I love my brother a great deal, but I don’t trust him. I don’t trust these easy conversations between us, his laughter, his just calling to chat.
Maybe that’s not fair.
I was thinking about that in terms of Anansi Boys because, in reading it, I kept thinking how sometimes you wish that you could stumble across a witch who knew routes to other places, even as you’re lighting the candles on your altar and sticking your nose in the jar full of herbs and resins and other plant parts that to you smells so much like magic it makes your head spin just to smell it, even in broad daylight, and you feel this world letting go just a little bit, enough to make it hard for you to walk without feeling dizzy, and you drop things because you lose track of what your body is doing here because part of you is shifting over there.
This isn’t really a book review, I guess.
But what I mean is that I’m so regularly looking to meet folks that make that shift, but it’s me.
I have a friend who appreciates altered states and so I keep trying to convince him to try to slip over with me, but he’s always turning me down.
I am the weird person I wish I knew.
I guess that doesn’t tell you much about the book, does it?
I liked it and I cried when Fat Charlie’s dad danced into the cancer ward to heal his mom. And it pleased me that he gave him his hat.