How often do you come across a news article, a tweet or a blog entry and say "What the heck?!" I do it all the time, and so I started “What The…?!” a new feature here at For Love and Books – basically just a catch-all for my Bookish Thoughts – be they current events or general topics.
Today’s Topic? Proper Care and Feeding of Books!
I don’t know about you, but I love my books. My physical, hard copy books. If I read an eBook that I just love, I will run out and buy the paper copy for my shelf. I’ll also probably loan it out if I think someone will love it as much as I do! But, I also expect (hopefully) that they will treat my books with care.
So what are some book etiquette tips for borrowing your friends beloved copy of To Kill a Mockingbird or your Father In Law’s copy of Tuesday’s With Morrie?? (Hey, I’m just keeping it real here! I greatly appreciate my father in law for letting me have free range with his book collection in the past!)
- Highlights. Please, for the love of cheese! Do NOT ever, EVER highlight or write in another persons book. Seriously; yes this is like one of those annoying safety tags “Don’t put your eye glasses in the toaster” or “Do not sit on the box of push pins” – it came about because it has happened. I mean, I am all for highlighting and writing in your own personal books – I have a spare copy of “The Stand” which I have made random notes, passed it on to my husband or friends, or whatever. But if you’ve borrowed a book from someone? And you think this is acceptable? You’re not coming to my next birthday party! (And hey – it was going to be at Chuck E Cheese, so you’re missing out!)
- Laying the book flat, setting a book open facedown instead of using a bookmark. (To be fair? I was talking about this post with a friend, and she mentioned this as one of her biggest pet peeves.) This *should* go without saying – because some of us don’t like to have the spines broken on our books. It’s pretty hard on a copy if you’re laying it around like that! So be sure to always keep your bookmark handy! (Or feel free to steal your husbands napkin before he uses it – I’ve been known to do that at dinner time while I’m reading!)
- Dog-Ears. I suppose I don’t need to say this, do I? (Although? I am anxiously awaiting Cyndi’s return to blogging!) Go practice your origami with toilet paper, not my book!
- Greasy Fingers – Back to the love of cheese!! Please do not eat your Cheetos covered pizza while reading my book. I don’t want your finger prints smeared everywhere. (And certainly – do NOT, under any circumstances? Do NOT lick the cheese grease off the page.)
- Bath-tub Reading. I know, I love to read in the tub. I take my iPad with me – yes, I’m a daredevil! But if it’s not your book? It’s not worth the risk.
Granted, I know these things are mostly common sense, and really? If something were to happen, it’s not that difficult to replace a book. (And chances are? If they leant it to you? It’s not that huge of a sentimental value to them…) But, you never know when someone’s Great Uncle Bob had given them the book just before he died tragically in a farming accident and that copy of “Space Invaders” that you’re reading might be their last link to Uncle Bob. Besides, it’s just about respect. Really.
So what about you? What’s your biggest (physical) book pet peeve?