I got tagged by Christian for this meme. I really enjoyed thinking about this one. Feel free to steal the meme and do it on your own blog.
What is the total number of books I've owned?
Oh gosh, I have two full bookcases in two different parts of the country. In Connecticut, I probably have 200 books in my bedroom there (yes, it is still in pristine condition as a shrine to my younger days), as well as probably several hundred in storage in the orthodontist area of our family home (it's a long story but in short: No my father's not an orthodontist, yes we have a complete orthodontist area in our home complete with a waiting room, receptionist's area, lab, three patient rooms and a bathroom. Maybe some day I'll blog about it if you remind me. If you really want to know more, that is).
I also have several hundred in my apartment. Somebody was over at my house a couple weeks ago and he remarked I had lots of books in my living room. I just kind of shrugged.
What was the last book that I bought?
Since they were all bought at the same time: Four different cookbooks, a wine guide, a broadcasting history anthology and a Norman Rockwell collection coffee table type book.
What was the last book that I read?
I am ashamed to say I don't read like I used to. I usually tote along several books on any vacation I go on, but I can't say with any firm recollection the last book I read. A couple months ago I picked up The Taming of the Shrew at B & N and quite liked it. Other than that, I read mostly newspapers and magazines (I would not survive without Cosmo). I mean to dive back into Great Expectations (see below) sometime this summer.
Name 5 books that mean a lot to you:
I had abizarree aptitude for reading when I was younger. I learned to read at around 4 or so, and could read complete newspapers at five, though I don't know how much I understood. In 4th grade my parents started requiring me to read The Classics. I had to read one a week (which sucked because Little Women had like 500 pages and yet To Kill A Mockingbird was only, like, 200). I really hated being holed up in my room reading The Old Man And The Sea and Goodbye, Mister Chips when I was 10. All I wanted to do was add to my collection of Nancy Drews, and so that's probably one of the books that mean a lot to me (Nancy, that is). I got my first ND in second grade as a gift for my First Communion. I remember the day like it was yesterday: We had brunch after church in downtown Cincinnati @ the Omni Netherland (kind of fancy schmancy). It was a highfalutin' brunch where the tables had white tablecloths and several forks at each place setting. Quite a moment to get stamped onto the brain of an eight year old.
Second important book: The Scarlet Letter. I had the most inspirational teacher for Honors English my junior year in high school. Bob Heifetz was his name, and he was a literary god. Mr H. had a way of getting each and every student (though I guess ours was not a class of dumbbells) to connect to the work in question. He was so passionate about T.S.L. and that passion rubbed on me. I still feel so bad for Hester Prynne and yet admire her strength at the same time.
Third important book: Great Expectations. Same reasoning, different teacher (Miss Miller, though the Miss is misleading, as she was probably 65 or so).
I would be remiss if I did not put the Bible on this list. As a practicing Catholic, I prefer the New American Version, though I am fairly certain each version pretty much imparts the same sentiment. My copy is a bit worn with little scribbles on passages I like or find significance. I truly believe the answer to every question about life can be found in the Bible. I like this acronym: Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth.
Book Five: The Peshal Book. Okay, that's not really what it's called (I think it says Childrens Stories by Better Homes and Gardens), but that's what I called it when I was little I was trying to say 'special'. It's this old anthology of children's stories that was given to my father when he was a little boy. I think his aunt dated her inscription something, like, 1945. Anyway, my dad used to read The Peshal Book to my sisters and me when we were little peanuts. My dad gave me the book for Christmas several years ago. I only hope I have a few little peanuts of my own someday to read to from The Peshal Book.