Pandemic Diary Day 3
I find solace in books and have a library that is around 2500 books. Since San Francisco began Sheltering in Place, every morning I climb on my exercise bike face the library and ruminate on what I have read, what I liked, and what I should pull down from the shelf and crack open as I pedal off to nowhere.
The problem is I also have a 30 book Tsundoku. For those not familiar, that is a Japanese word for saving books by your bed for later reading. And, yes I do see the irony in the fact that one of those 30 books is The Japanese Have a Word for It by Boye Lafayette De Mente.
So for now I am reading the biography of Margaret Bourke-White by Vicki Goldberg. There is a fun story behind the choice of this book, and even more importantly it has led me to add another element to this diary.
The book was recommended to me by my friend Jacklyn Spainhour who is the Director of the Hunter House Victorian Museum, Vice President of The Victorian Society in America AND a great mom to an adorable special needs son. (One of my super heroes).
She knows that I am a photographer, with a handful of shows to qualify me as a fine grain of sand more than an amateur. One day we were discussing the fact that over the last two years I had been moving towards, concentrating on, and loving, shooting all Black and White and she insisted I pick up this book.
You may not know the name Margaret Bourke-White, or even her work but you may know the iconic photograph taken by Oscar Graubner of Margaret Bourke-White atop the Chrysler Building. The picture shows her taking a photo of the city’s skyline while sitting on one of the 61st-floor eagle ornaments.
The breadth of her work is unlimited and her personality is as unique as can be. The book is 365 pages long, so it is most likely going to be a while before I add another book to this diary, but if we stay under SIP for as long as some are saying, there will be more books.
So, as I mentioned, this has lead me to add another element to this diary. I am going to go outside once a day and take a photo of my surroundings. Some may be boring as I capture empty streets, but I hope to catch other things out there that have become more obvious with those empty streets. I will share them with you good or bad, I promise.
So that is what I am reading. I do hope that you go look around your house, find a book you have been meaning to tackle and realize, there is no better time than now to listen to that amazing sound and wonderful smell when you open a real live book and dive into the wonders it holds and the places it will take you. How, at night when your eyes hit half mast and you slip that bookmark between the pages, you know there will be more characters, more plots and more pleasure the next day, and how, someday you will be casually discussing this very same book and find someone was as in love with it as you. I hope for you that this leads to a new friend, a great conversation, or simply a recommendation made because you liked and read the book that is sitting waiting for you.
Please feel free to share in the comments, books that are helping you get through this. I for one can not think of a better place to hide right now than in a book.
My Horoscope for today: No sooner do you decide to move forward with a financial matter then another option materializes. Don’t get distracted right when you’re finally on the right track.
The NYT Crossword Puzzle: Medium Hard — favorite answer Cave Canum
San Francisco weather: 55 degrees and cloudy
NYSE Dow opened at : 21898
Italian word of the day: libro — book (that was a fun coincidence)
Spanish word of the day: atardecer — dusk
OED word of the day: wallydraigle
Days under Shelter in Place: 13
My Black and White Picture of the Day
This is Folsom Street in the South of Market area of San Francisco. If you are not familiar with this area it is filled with small start up tech companies. These streets are usually filled with workers and this street should have so many cars on it that I would never be able to shoot it without one. And lastly, there is something in this photograph that one never sees in San Francisco, empty parking spaces.
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