...I wouldn't have anything to do today but read and listen to music. It's a drizzly day here in Boston; the sky is gun-metal gray and the light is flat. It's not an awful day, but it's dark and dreary. Which makes it, in my opinion, a perfect day to screw off — to sit in the most comfortable chair in the apartment and pile up the books and the CDs (and food products — I'm thinking Newman's Own Champion Chip chocolate chip cookies, personally, because I finished all the pecan tarts my mom gave me to bring home after Thanksgiving) and dig in. Here's what I'm reading right now:
- Little Children by Tom Perrotta — funny, sharp, and (for the attention-impaired) easy to read in small pieces.
- Bel Canto by Ann Patchett — beautiful. Hypnotic. Requires attention but worth it.
- What to Expect in the First Year — everybody warned me off these What To Expect books, but I kind of enjoy them. And they are actually useful, although on occasion the tone ("your baby should certainly be done using a bottle by the time he is one!") is terrifying to us slacker moms.
- Will in the World by Stephen Greenblatt — just bought it, so I can't report anything yet, but I'm excited. I just saw Kevin Spacey in Richard II and it reminded me (as any Shakespeare performance does) how unimaginably wonderful Shakespeare is.
- Getting Things Done by David Allen — dorky, I know, but I read a fantastic piece by James Atlas (I think it was James Atlas???yikes) about Allen, the "personal productivity guru," as he calls himself, and I was completely intrigued. I spend many, many, many hours every day trying to figure out how to get myself organized and get more done, and even though I don't really believe a book can help do that, I was pretty persuaded by the profile of Allen.
So now I just have to find time to read the book.... And in the background, I'd want to have playing:
- A Ghost is Born — Wilco
- Year of Meteors — Laura Veirs
- Franco and TPOK Jazz — any of their zillions of albums
- The Hour of Bewilderbeast — Badly Drawn Boy
- Rabbit Songs — Hem
- Bareback — Hank Dogs
Okay, so there's my perfect day. Of course, this is the real world, slightly less than perfect, and I actually have to get back to work....
Books mentioned in this post
Susan Orlean is the author of My Kind of Place: Travel Stories from a Woman Who's Been Everywhere