Monday, November 26, 2007

Grinning Inside

“Joy is the feeling of grinning inside.” -Melba Colgrove

There's been a lot of blogging lately about the Kindle, and I can see that this electronic device has many positive attributes.

But it will never be able to duplicate the experience of sharing a beautifully illustrated, rollicking picture book like my new favorite, "I Ain't Gonna Paint No More" (Karen Beaumont), with a class of enthusiastic first graders.

When a classroom teacher tells you that the kids sang the story to her as soon as they returned from library time, you know you have a hit on your hands.

The digital world is wonderful, but there is still a time and a place for books.

"Then I thought of reading - the nice and subtle happiness of reading ... this joy not dulled by age, this polite and unpunishable vice, this selfish, serene, lifelong intoxication." -Logan Pearsall Smith


Carolyn Foote said...

Interestingly, I had just been commenting at 21st Century Collaborative about the Kindle.

As I'm sure you have guessed, I love online "everything" and gadgets, etc. --I'm gaga over them generally.

But I am just not a fan of electronic book devices, and am still waiting for the day that everything is one device(like an iPhone/iBook).

I don't think anyone expects that the KINDLE would replace print books in general but I can see some benefits. For example,they would be excellent replacements for print textbooks because of the instant ability to update the textbook...

And as I've been working on weeding out nonfiction, I've been wishing that the books would have been able to update themselves, which would have been a good use of our library funds.

But I'm in agreement with you--for sheer sharing and page turning delight, a print book is so tactile and so appealing and so touchable...that it really resonates with me most deeply.

I think that's because for me, the print is about story. The device is about information.

Loved the great picture...I'll have to find that book!

diane said...


It's a fantastic book; I sing it to the tune of "It Ain't Gonna Rain No More".

I would probably do better with Kindle (visual) than with eBooks (auditory).

Planning on a post inspired by your collection weeding: found three computer books that were published in the 1980s. Their prediction of what the technologically-enhanced home of 2000 would look like is priceless!


CB said...

Such a loving tribute. You calm me so often when I visit.

Sorry I can't linger - at work - but I'll just say nothing can replace my annotated complete works of Keats, and Nietzsche, and Homer, and Wilde, and and and.

But lugging the damn things from country to country every time I moved makes me sometimes wish they were digital ;-)

diane said...


The best, most cherished gift I received in college was a complete Shakespeare from my favorite English Lit teacher.

He believed in me, honored my contributions and encouraged my flights of fancy.

There is nothing that can duplicate the sheer tactile pleasure of a book.

I surround myself with old favorites and new discoveries.

I draw into myself and journey inward, outward, awash in the joy of books!


Anonymous said...

Great post that I thought warranted the revival of this great little piece on New Technology :-)

The Book

Announcing the new Built-in Orderly Organized Knowledge device (BOOK). It's a revolutionary breakthrough in technology: no wires, no electric circuits, no batteries, nothing to be connected or switched on. It's so easy to use even a child can operate it. Just lift its cover. Compact and portable, it can be used anywhere-even sitting in an armchair by the fire-yet it is powerful enough to hold as much information as a CD-ROM disk.

Here's how it works: Each BOOK is constructed of sequentially numbered sheets of paper (recyclable), each capable of holding thousands of bits of information. These pages are locked together with a custom-fit device called a binder which keeps the sheets in their correct sequence. By using both sides of the sheet, manufacturers are able to cut costs in half. Each sheet is scanned optically, registering information directly into your brain. A flick of the finger takes you to the next sheet.

The BOOK may be taken up at any time and used by merely opening it. The "browse" feature allows you to move instantly to any sheet, and move forward or backward as you wish. Most come with an "index" feature, which pinpoints the exact location of any selected information for instant retrieval. An optional "BOOKmark" accessory allows you to open the BOOK to the exact place you left it in a previous session-even if the BOOK has been closed. BOOKmarks fit universal design standards; thus a single BOOKmark can be used in BOOKs by various manufacturers.

Portable, durable, and affordable, the BOOK is the entertainment wave of the future, and many new titles are expected soon, due to the surge in popularity of its programming tool, the Portable Erasable-Nic Cryptic Intercommunication Language Stylus...

Taken from

Ryan Bretag :-)

diane said...

Thank you, Ryan!

I think I read that a while ago but lost track of the source.

Our world is big enough to accommodate both technological enhancements and old-fashioned print pleasures.