I'll admit it... isn't that the first step towards recovery? I am addicted. When I think about doing it, I start to quiver with anticipation. When I find out it's available, I go out of my way to get it. I know where I can find the dealers, I know the prices, for the large items and small. I'm such a frequent customer, I get a discount from the peddlers. I'll drive for 30 minutes from Eagle River to get the latest shipment. I even pre-order! And, yes, I've used previous versions as stepping-stone "drugs" to newer and better, more expensive, releases. I hide my purchases from my family. I do it in private, in public, in the bathroom, and in bed. I'm a junkie. And, my friends encourage my addiction, constantly encouraging me to "try this, you'll like it." And, I always do! I've started two groups around my addiction, so I can meet with other "junkies" and talk about our addiction. Now that a Title Wave Bookstore has opened where the old Cook Inlet Book Company once was, my addiction can be fed on a daily basis (as the bookstore is only a few blocks from my worksite). Yes, I'm addicted to books and reading. I can't get enough! I may just need help! I wonder if there's a 12-step program for people with my addiction.
I'd be fine if it weren't for the continued encouragement from friends who INSIST I read a book they just finished that "they just couldn't put down." It's all their fault. Isn't that the sign of a true addict? Blaming my addiction on others? And, if my friends would quit writing in their blogs about books they plan to read, or have read, or are in the process of reading (mainly books about Alaska on one blog) I wouldn't feel the urge to go and purchase the books they have listed.
I keep telling everyone that I can live without it, that I can quit at any time. I keep insisting that I won't purchase another book, that I'll read the ones I have, that I'll even get books at the library. But, I never do. If I had 15$ and a choice between going to lunch or getting a book, I'd choose purchasing the book.
Title Wave on 5th Avenue in downtown Anchorage has an awesome selection of Alaskan books. On almost every shelf (except for the ones in the back right hand corner, and some new releases at the front of the store) there are books by Alaskan authors, books about traveling in Alaska, books about Alaskan wildlife, wild flowers, wilderness escapades. As a junkie, my "drug" of choice is anything Alaskan. After all, I still feel like a tourist here, every day. Today, intending ONLY to purchase The Crucible by Arthur Miller for my daughter for school, I went into Title Wave with a mission. That mission quickly blew up (as did the dollar amount charged to my debit card) as I looked for her book. I ended up walking out with two bags of books. TWO BAGS and $140 less in my bank account than what I walked in with. I got a Fodors Alaska 2007 guide, Looking For Alaska by Peter Jenkins, 50 Hikes in Alaska's Chugach State Park and Alaska Wild Berries and berry-like fruit. I also got 5 other NON Alaskan books, but if I'd spent any more time in the store, those 5 would have been put back and I would have replaced them with 5 Alaskan books. While looking for Kay's book (which I completely forgot about and ended up having to purchase separately as a second transaction), I found the section on Alaskan bush pilots, wild animals, Alaskan history, the earthquake of 1964 and others.
I've decided to start leaving my plastic purchase power at home from now on. Since the downtown Title Wave doesn't take checks, I should be safe. I know I've got enough to read, and that I'd be fine if I didn't purchase another book for a year, but the addiction is strong! It's hard to give it up once I started, and I've been a junkie since I was young. My fondest memories of my youth were leaving in the early morning hours of summer, walking to the library, and not leaving until it closed. Some of my best friends lived inside the pages of the books I read. I lived their adventures with them and they will always be a part of me. I need to stop talking about it. Talking about it feeds the addiction. I've got to get a hold of myself!