I finished my sad book last night. I stayed up too late to read it, and I feel kind of hungover this morning from the lack of sleep. My mom asked me this weekend why I would read a book that was so sad, and you know, that’s a good question. I suppose it is kind of like reading a scary book, where the primary enjoyment is the writing and the scared feeling is a delicious bonus. A friend of mine posted on Facebook this weekend that she had caught her daughter staying up past her bedtime to read, and I commented that I used to do that, only the past tense isn’t really appropriate here, because I suppose I still do. These days I tend to read in great binges, gulping the book down hungrily over 24 hours, and then not reading anything more for a few weeks, until the urge strikes again.
I used to love scary books, although I don’t read them much anymore because they are often badly written, which unfortunately renders me unable to actually enjoy them. When I was 11 or 12, I spent the better part of a year reading everything Stephen King had written up to that point, before moving on to Dean Koontz and John Saul and various other authors that definitely wouldn’t be classified as Young Adult literature. A few weeks ago I spent many hours reading the articles linked to in this Wikipedia list of people who disappeared mysteriously, which I came to deeply, deeply regret when Mike took Ellie to Sarnia for the weekend to visit his parents and I had to go to bed in a house that was empty except for two lazy cats and a ridiculous dog who I don’t expect would be all that scary to a possible intruder. Some of the items on that list were pretty innocuous, like boats that capsized or people who faked their own deaths only to be tracked down years later in Australia, but many of them were just people who did something, and were subsequently “NEVER HEARD FROM AGAIN”. That idea is truly unsettling. People can just disappear! Never to be heard from again! Imagine ominous music playing in the background as you read this!
Anyway, it is a very good thing that I was in sad book mode this weekend instead of scary book mode, because I came into the kitchen late in the evening to discover the creepy alien face pictured above. There is an obvious explanation for this phenomenon (overhead lights cause crazy reflection in pot lids) but I am posting this here so if I disappear mysteriously, you’ll know why. If they make a movie about it, please make sure Janeane Garofalo plays me.