Day 5: Seven Days Until Thirty-Two

Will be turning 32 soon and for the next seven days leading up to my birthday, I’m going to try to write down any lessons I may have learned from the past year when I was 31.

I’ve always enjoyed reading. I grew up with my mom, and she read a lot of books despite the fact that we lived far away from retail bookstores which makes me wonder now how she got a hold of her vast collection of Sidney Sheldon novels, or her book about Margaret Thatcher. When I was seven, I visit my dad’s family for the first time in Colorado and was impressed with my grandmother’s library in the basement. Despite my fear of the basement – I recall going downstairs, sometimes alone, and just looking through the different western novels and books about vampires and ghosts. Impressionable Ken somehow ended up liking strong female leads like Thatcher, and still have the penchant for the unnatural like vampires and ghosts.

I gave up my iPod for Lent – which makes subway rides to and from work unbearable. I typically listen to podcasts to kill time – now, I read books. It’s been roughly three weeks since Ash Wednesday and I’ve already gone through at least four books. I read The Island in the Center of the World by Russell Shorto which told about the Dutch colonization of Manhattan and the surrounding areas, Susannah Cahalan’s Brain on Fire about a New York Post writer who went through a month ordeal of a mental breakdown due to some unusual medical condition, The Testament of Mary by Colm Toibin which a fiction narrative of what Mary Mother of Jesus might have gone experience after the death of her son, and Colin Dickey’s Afterlives of the Saints which told stories of different and very unusual saints like Saint Lucy who gouged out her own eyes.

Currently reading Sybil Exposed by Debbie Nathan which chronicled the story of Shirley Mason, whose life inspired a book, which was later turned into a tv movie special that nabbed Sally Field an Emmy back in the 70s.

Obviously, I have a thing for New York stories, crazy people and the nonsecular. And frankly, I don’t think I’d stop reading stories similar to these.

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