Thursday, May 21, 2009

Paige, like a piece of paper

I love books. I love literature. I love writing. I even tell people that my writer/editor mother and my printer/publisher/book enthusiast father named me Paige, as in Paige like a piece of paper.

So imagine the thrill when I went out for dinner with my very bookish parents, when I discovered a novel sitting on the sidewalk at Hardware Lane. It was A Backward Place by Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, with a little note saying "Please take and read!" The inside cover revealed a book tracking number and the address I was completely enchanted. The idea of leaving pieces of literature in random places for strangers to pick up and read is so completely romantic. (Of course, my mysophobic father was seriously disturbed by the fact that I was going to pick up a book from the street and bring it home with me.)

So after reading it, I decided to release it back into the wild today. I chose my target: the number 70 tram into Melbourne. Thinking that I was being so sneaky and subtle, I slid the book behind my back when no one was looking. Then I got up at Flinders Street Station and totally ignored it. Just when I was about to step off the tram, the very attractive man I was sitting next to tapped me on the shoulder and said, "Excuse me, Miss. You've left your book behind."

Oh fuck.