There was a time in my life -- early adolescence -- when I loved biographies. I suppose I was trying to get a feel for the rhythm of lives. I hoped that by reading the lives of exceptional people I admired, I might get a clue how to live an exceptional life myself.
Gradually, my reading tastes changed. But I just finished, almost at one sitting, a gripping biography of an altogether unique mind.
I suppose it's my background in philosophy: I enjoy a good argument every now and then. But a "good" argument isn't just disagreeing with somebody. It's trying on a perspective for size, seeing how easy or difficult something is to defend or critique.
The object isn't to defeat the opponent. The object is to learn something.
Douglas County's first bookmobile, featuring 8 stops, was provided by the now defunct Plains and Peaks Library System, headquartered in Colorado Springs. These days, we again have a bookmobile, shuttling back and forth between Roxborough and Castle Pines North.
But bookmobiles aren't the only way to get books into people's hands. As told on the thoroughly charming website www.bookboat.com, countries around the world have found a host of innovative solutions to various topographic and social barriers.
When I was growing up, my mother had two beautiful sets of books. One of them was classics of science. I think there were pieces by Aristotle, by Newton, by somebody I've now forgotten, and by Einstein.
The other was a selection of Shakespeare plays: the comedies, the dramas, and the sonnets.
I loved the look of those books. I was 11 when I decided to try Shakespeare. So I'd take those gorgeous volumes up to my room and try to puzzle them out.