“The advantage of a bad memory is that one enjoys several times the same good things for the first time.”
Hello! It’s been a while since I posted something aside from reviews, and from now on, I would like to include more things outside of the reviews to keep things interesting! I have a number of things planned, such as a deeper analysis of the books I have read, and more posts such as this one! I hope you enjoy a small sharing of my thoughts and experience 😀
Reading has been one of my primary approaches to make me feel better in a number of senses. By flipping the pages of a book, absorbing the information contained within the sentences of the books, admiring the beauty of the words written, I would often get lost in a world beyond reality, freeing myself from the burdens and even obtaining some sort of guilty pleasure by escaping my responsibilities (assignments? 😛 ) as a new reality is constructed by me when I read. When reading and during the moments of being engrossed in one particular book, the words found on the pages ARE my reality; within the joyful confinement of those words, where I can let myself free at anytime yet I find myself incapable of doing so due to the sheer pleasure I obtain from reading, I am already liberated. Such is the euphoric state I am possibly in while reading a really good book or one that is simply to my liking. However, despite my fondness for writing, there is one thing preventing me from being ‘a confident reader’. Like clot of an unknown substance inside my head, there is a certain fear rising within whenever I finish a book.
“Will I forget?”
Usually, whenever I finish a book, I will remember most of the elements within that book, from the plot, the twists and turns the characters, basically most of the events unfolding in the book. After a few weeks, however, the images which used to be so clear, so vivid start to deteriorate before gradually vanish altogether, leaving only the general plot development and a few core-character names behind. An example would be from Haruki Murakami’s “Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage”, in which as of the time of this writing, I could only remember the characters and their relationships along with the core-plot development. Being a book with so many philosophical discussions and metaphors, I really enjoyed it. Ironically, those metaphorical narratives that I liked so much were the ones I started to forget first. Right now, I can no longer remember the flow of discussions Tsukuru had with Ao, for example, aside from the general idea that it was about Tsukuru’s questioning and Ao’s lack of idea.
This is the ‘problem’ that I face, not only with that particular book, but also numerous others. I read “Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki” twice for the sake of remembering more, but even after that, the memory of the good times simply crumble, leaving only the foundations of the story. Haunted by this enigma, where I constantly ponder on what makes me forget the things that I like so much, I would feel that I might not be able to say with brimming confidence that “I am a good, avid reader who has read a lot of books” since most of the time, I forget numerous details about those books, resulting in me being able to say “yeah, I have read that one”, but unable to actively participate in a discussion regarding the book.
I would re-read them or open certain pages whenever I feel uncomfortable by not being able to recall certain developments, but this does not actually solve the issue at hand. Moreover, there are so many books I would like to read, and I wouldn’t have the time to finish them if I re-read those books whenever I feel my recollection of them is declining. Regardless, whether this is a matter of bad-memory or not, I still like reading, and will definitely read for many years to come, if not forever until my time ends, since I believe reading is such a wonderful thing to do. I do hope that “a good reader” is not measured by how well he or she remembers, but rather, how one’s view towards reading really is.
Do you also experience issues similar to this? or perhaps there are some suggestions? Feel free to share it here! 😀