Bring Back Books

“Read As to Why You Should Keep on Reading.”


If only for a moment, I’m going to revisit Emma Padelford’s iconic piece that was published all the way back in April of 2018, in which she made us admit to some of the habits and common quirks of life that the majority of us are prone to; I have to admit myself, I’ve probably stopped reading nearly as much as I should. 


It’s a typical case, perhaps a ‘not-so-avid reader doesn’t read when not forced to’ sort of affair, yet still I’ll admit that I haven’t genuinely sat down and read a book on my own accord from start to finish since freshman year (of course, “start to finish” meaning a gradual process, because oh how the world would turn if a man could ever read a book with such haste). 


For context, I used to read a bit more outside of school when I was younger, often diving into the better works from Stephen King’s bibliography, or some one-off pieces of nebulous poetry, both of which are things that I’ve touched on in earlier pieces. With this being the case, I can still say with certainty that with age I’ve dropped my reading habits altogether (and probably four-score and seven points off of my Lexile count). 


There’s something strange about this particular occurence, it mainly being the fact that I’m not entirely sure what worked to cause the abrupt shift in literary ambition. 


I think it comes down to a few factors, the one that strikes me the most being the constant flow of books from other classes. 


I know that it’s gonna get worse in college, trust me, but I’ve got a science textbook to read (as in poke at with apathy), The American Pageant to memorize (‘lest I feel the wrath of Mr. Rosinbum), and a bunch of fun stuff in APLAC that gets all jumbled around in my backpack (right now it’s The Great Gatsby, and let’s just say that Fitzgerald’s inebriated rambles aren’t the most welcoming). 


I wouldn’t really say that it’s overwhelming, but it is a lot, and it has been a recurring process throughout the entirety of my high school career. Whether it’s Macbeth or Wuthering Heights (a.k.a, “Heathcliff & Others” as described by Mr. Racine), it comes down to the fact that each year more and more reading material is seemingly pressed down upon the students of MRHS. 


Speaking of MRHS, let’s stop talking about me for a second, and direct some more attention towards the student body as a whole. 


Of course, there will always be bookworms and the decidedly illiterate, yet when it comes to the inbetween of those two extremes, it’s apparent that not many kids are actually reading jack-squat. 


The great Mr. Jacob Gabow once said (as in, earlier this week, which inspired me to write this piece,): “Man you should never stop reading when you get older,” which was followed up by a brief yet inspiring speech which detailed how information is best taught through reading, and that reading on the toilet specifically is one of the best methods to enhancing one’s previously mentioned literary ambition. 


I have to switch back to me again one last time in an effort to stop myself from interjecting into this piece anymore than I already have; My best mate Mya gifted me this ginormous novel back in December for Christmas, and I haven’t even read the first page. It really makes me feel like I’m missing out on all of the wonders of a good book, and frankly, I think that a lot of my peers might actually feel the same if they put some thought into it. 


So, to heed my food for thought, and the wise words of Ridge’s ‘best-bearded’ Spanish teacher, might not be a bad idea for any students that might need to get back into the groove of reading at least a few hefty novels a year. You’ll learn new things, and get lost in some interesting stories, truth be told there’s not much to lose. 


If only for a moment, get off of The Ridge Review and pick out something from your parent’s collection. If their movies are always good, chances are their books probably are too.