Appendix B. A Hard-Boiled Library


Mind like parachute, only function when open.

 --Charlie Chan

I’ve been collecting books for as long as I can remember. Someday I hope to read them all again. That would be like living forever, and we all know how long that is.

I’ve bought, lent, borrowed, and stolen books. Sold them to stay alive, and then bought ’em back again. I’ve traded books, written books, published books, and donated ’em. I’ve lost ’em. I’ve slept with ’em. I’ve dreamed of books that never existed and invented others that should have (like my coin-operated novel). I’ve sculpted ’em and painted ’em. I’ve made objects out of books and books out of objects. I’ve collaged and massaged ’em. Fetishized ’em. Worshipped ’em. I’ve driven spikes ...

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