Monday, 5 October 2009

Roll up! Roll up! A never-before-seen meme!

My esteemed colleague and blog friend beanphoto is collecting reading experiences. So I thought I would turn his questions into a meme, so then you can help him. He's a very nice man, and he makes me coffee a lot, so he deserves it.

I am doing the meme myself here, see.

1.Most memorable place/experience reading a book?
Do you know, I have just realised I am the most tedious woman alive. I have had no memorable experiences reading books. In fact, I don't recall ever having any memorable experiences at all, ever, with or without reading material.

Though memories of every part of my adult life come bound up with book-reading. (I'm not so hot on remembering childhood). Reading on trains travelling to see my old boyfriend at college, reading in my college room, next to the University lake; later, escaping to a cafe every lunchtime at my first job to read; reading on buses when I lived in Liverpool, reading poetry with the handsome young man I met at a poetry reading (aka Mr Coffee); reading in pubs, cafes, on ferries, at home, abroad.

2. Most unusual place/experience reading a book?
It's not exactly reading, but a friend just invited me to a book group she is setting up, and it seems to take place in a swimming pool. I doubt we'll actually take books though. (Or even talk about them, if I'm honest.)

3. Most dangerous place/experience reading a book?
I used to read books on the bedroom floor in the semi dark whilst trying to get small children to sleep. And that would strain my eyes, wouldn't it! God, I live life on the edge. I also remember sneakily reading a book whilst I had measles as a teenager, having been told I could Go Blind if I did.

I'm a risk-taker.

And while we were camping this summer we read outside the tent at night with headtorches, and one night a hedgehog came up to us. And hedgehogs creep me out*. So that was dangerous, because it made me jump and I nearly spilled my wine.

*They motor along as if they're on wheels. Creepy.

4. Most luxurious place/experience reading a book?
My sister in law told me when I was pregnant with Eldest that I should do nothing in the weeks before the birth. No nesting, no preparing, no batch cooking and freezing meals, nothing. So I spent 4 weeks sitting on the sofa napping and reading James Ellroy novels. And I look back on those weeks as the most relaxed time in my life. I always laugh behind my hand when pregnant women go on about nesting and freezing meals. (That's not true. I laugh right in their faces.)

Now my luxury is reading in the afternoon - Eldest is just getting confident enough with her reading to sometimes snuggle up with me for 20 minutes after school to read our books together quietly. It's often the best bit of the day, if Littlest isn't screaming at us.

5. Funniest place/experience reading a book? Or, add a reading-place/experience description of your own...

Mr Coffee once came upon me reading How to Stop Smoking and Stay Stopped For Good whilst smoking a Marlboro Light. He thought that was pretty funny. But it was 12 years ago, which is about the time I Stopped Smoking For Good. So.

And that's it. The deal is that you tag some people - let's say maybe three, though I'm doing five, to get it going - and when you've done it you email beanphoto at and tell him you did it so he can go and collect it. And ask the bloggers you tag to do the same.

I'm tagging Readersguide, Eurolush, Badger, Dottycookie and Every Day I Lie a Little.


  1. Oh blimey, you mean I'm going to have to think?

    There I was, enjoying your list. How am I supposed to live up to that? Hmmmm. I shall see what I can do.

  2. I hate it when people tag me for a meme, when their own meme is far funnier and more interesting than mine will ever be.

    Scary hedgehogs on wheels?


  3. So you think that just because I manage only about nine books per year now, I wasn't EVER a reader?

    Deeply wounded. DEEPLY wounded am I. I hope Mrs. Magpie and Limecat and Tess will be willing to form a Club of the Overlooked with me. With really good snacks. Featuring PLUMS. Of course.

  4. Oh, dude. Ninety-nine percent of my reading is done either in the car while waiting for the Badger children to be dismissed from school, or in bed after drinking a whisky but before nodding off (which necessitates re-reading those same passages the next day in the car, while waiting for the Badger children to be dismissed from school).

    Can't I substitute "doing naughties" for "reading a book"? My answers would be a lot more interesting and I'm sure your friend would find them VERY useful.

  5. What a great meme. Dangerous places to read...? All I can think of is whilst crossing the road and when I was a teenager with a candle. Crazy.

  6. so funny, and hedgehogs are dangerous as well as scary, I had to swerve tonight to miss one whilst driving up the hill...

  7. that's brilliant about the marlboro lights...that's something my mum would've done (though she never would've smoked light anything)


I love comments. I always try to respond - either here in the commentbox or by email if Blogger gives me your email address.

Thanks for visiting!