It’s been seven months since I started Roland Barthes’ A Lover’s Discourse and I am not done with it yet. I’d like to think it’s because I juggle it with J. D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye and Tracy Chevalier’s Girl with the Pearl Earring, but truth is, I have not dedicated hours and days to reading anymore.
It’s a shame I haven’t given as much time to novels. These days I’d rather spend the entire day at the office getting exhausted of Social Media matters which Forbes recently deemed, not an actual career. Sucks, I know. And on weekends, I do errands like grocery shopping, walking my pet to the park, girlfriend duties, etc.
I miss the luxury of laying down in bed, leafing through the pages, meeting characters, and getting immense sympathy for them to the point of investing emotions and bawling in tears at their expense. I can only recall how much I loved Salinger’s detailed conversations in Franny and Zooey that I actually played the scene on my mind the moment I was reading it. I can only remember the feelings the unnamed characters endured in David Levithan’s A Lover’s Dictionary in order for them to keep the relationship. I can only recollect becoming victorious and infinite with Charlie in Stephen Chbosky’s Perks of Being a Wallflower. With Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye, I find joy in picturing Holden Caufield and his relationships and conversations with schoolmates which reminds me of my years studying far from home and not being somewhat aloof to the new people. Yes, I have not yet moved from that part of the book.
As for philosophical reads, I take more time to digest them as compared to fiction. I try to relate and ponder at every chapter and identify myself with the text. Yes, I recall instances of my life and compare and relate to what I have read. Think: Antoine de Saint Exupery’s The Little Prince, Blaise Pascal’s On Human Happiness, and letters and writings of Kahlil Gibran. These are the kind of books that are not just as easy to read. I mean, I always feel like reading into them means more than reading into them, like there is a whole lot of message you need to understand.
And right now, I take the same particularity in reading Barthes. You see, the problem with reading his text is that, knowing he is a semiologist, I tend to read, let’s say a paragraph, all over again thinking he embedded somewhere between words some sort of sign. It is kind of confusing how familiarity brings about complexity in reading. Or, am I just being too critical? Ugh.
Oh well. Bottomline, I need a time off and save a date for a date with these books lined up on my bedside table.