Cloud Gate | Chicago
Marina City | Chicago
I’m just a few days past the halfway mark of my quest to read thirty books between my 30th and 31st birthdays. I am currently in the middle of Michael Chabon’s Pulitzer Prize-winning The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay. It is the fourteenth book I’ve read, meaning I’m just about one book behind schedule. With summer approaching, and a trip to the Cotswolds, I am confident that I will be able to meet my goal by my birthday.
Here’s the list so far:
1. Simbly Jesus by N.T. Wright
2. How God Became King by N.T. Wright
3. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
4. The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson
5. Frank Lloyd Wright: A Biography by Meryle Secrest
6. The Final Solution by Michael Chabon
7. Qu4rtets by Makoto Fujimura and Bruce Herman
8. The Mysteries Of Pittsburgh by Michael Chabon
9. Simply Christian by N.T. Wright
10. Life Of Pi by Yann Martel
11. Wherever I Wind Up by R.A. Dickey
12. Let The Great World Spin by Colum McCann
13. Four Quartets by T.S. Eliot
14. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon
Several of these books were in queue to be read from the very beginning of this journey. I knew, for example, that I wanted to delve into the world of N.T. Wright during this year. Others just stumbled into my path. I picked up Let The Great World Spin at a local book store because the cover looked cool. A few weeks later my father-in-law mentioned that it was on the list of potential summer reading requirements for Fall 2013 freshmen at Duke University (it was officially selected about three days after I began reading it). Accidentally discovered, it became one of the most powerful stories I have ever read. Colum McCann’s writing is masterful.
Another unique twist is that during the last few months I dove into the writing of my own book, a novel based on the life of my grandmother. I truly believe that reading the likes of McCann and Chabon is greatly impacting my writing, and certainly my thinking on writing.
My wife and I continue to watch copious amounts of our favorite television shows, and of course I am glued to Instagram and Twitter all day like the rest of you, but this reading thing has managed to dent my armor enough that I find myself more and more prone to shut off all the devices and sit in the stillness with a few pages and some sunlight.
So I’ll keep reading.
Here’s to the finish, but even more to the journey.
The Foresters (my band with Nicholas Petersen) is giving away our first album for free on NoiseTrade. Go get it.
Rest in peace, Gus. You had more personality than any dog I’ve ever know. I’ll miss you.
I was driving through the mountains of East Tennessee earlier this week, my wife asleep in the seat beside me, and my favorite Wilco album quietly playing on the stereo. As I came around a large bend I met a most gorgeous scene. Ahead I saw a slight curve in the road with countless trees hanging over it and sunlight fighting to burst through. It was beautiful.
My first though was this: “That would be a great picture.”
My second thought was this: “Just enjoy it, you dope.”
Gods often speaks to us through our eyes. It’s natural to want to capture those moments and share them with others (see my previous post), but I think I often let some of the best moments in my life slip away while I attempt to capture them for later. Of course photographs are an incredible gift, and I am thankful for the ability to visually catalog my experiences, but sometimes I just want to forget the camera and let the moment sink in and have its way with me.