I'm just fine with my own era, thank you, and can't stand the dumb, easy demographic identification via TIME magazine-style lowest common denominator. The T-shirt was from a favorite indie bookstore, Point Reyes Books,
where I have spent happy hippie hours reading, and being from all kinds
of times and places, yet still close to the magnificent Pacific coastline, the rolling hills, Tomales Bay and other thoughtful people who perhaps, unlike the clerk, get out a bit and meet interesting people . . . like me!
Still, that clerk gave me my lead for this week's post, and what I should probably do is track him down and gift him a book. And blow his mind, man. Or let him know about those other people, a lot of them out of the '60s, who don't like books and want others to be frightened, timid, incurious.
I know it's only early August, but there's no time like right now to start planning for the next American Library Association's Banned Books Week. I've organized public read-ins and talks in past years for this wing-ding. It's fun! Maybe I will stand outside a Ralphs in Lake Forest and read dirty books, thus being another easy stereotype! Below is a handy (alas, incomplete!) list from which you and I might pick excerpts from work to which some knucklehead or other has objected, for all kinds of so-called reasons, concerns or, mostly, to ostensibly “protect” children from words, even as we spend millions dropping–no, not books–bombs and drones and handguns on the world's kids. Don't get me started! (Oh, and what is it with Ralphs not having an apostrophe? Is it that there are so many guys named Ralph or that he has a store?)