Lone Grey Squirrel has tagged me with the Wise Bird Award.
I am flattered. But as I told him, I am not wise. I am just curious. And I take as my hero – though his end was unfortunate – Jude of Hardy’s “Jude the Obscure.” He was an ordinary guy who refused to believe that the classics of the ages, the knowledge, the great languages, belonged only to stuffy, high-born intellectuals. It annoys me when people whom I know are smart, just let their brains gather dust once they have earned their high school diploma. Why the hell shouldn’t a plumber be able to recite Shakespeare, or a custodian be conversant with Plato? Why shouldn’t ordinary folk gathered around an office water cooler be able to have a conversation about St. Augustine or Sappho?
So I read big books, even though I have to go through them rather slowly and sometimes repeat a paragraph or two. I am a human being and therefore I have the right – even the obligation – to commune with great human minds past and present.
I'll pass this award along later today.