CANNONBALL! into the water

because sometimes you just have to jump and hope you won't get hurt.

Monday, June 26, 2006

speed reading and how it only works for fun books

It seems that every single time a new Harry Potter book comes out I am vacationing in Michigan. And my aunt is there, along with her two kids.

One summer, I arrived, and my aunt was about halfway through the Harry Potter book. We would sit on the beach together, when the kids weren't pulling me away from reading and begging me to swim in the water so cold it can stop your breathing. And we would read.

I tend to be a speed reader when it comes to enjoyable works. As far as reading things like a Chemistry textbook, it takes me a lot longer - like an eternity. This is because in order to read a textbook (much like writing a paper for a college class) one must procrastinate in every way, shape, and form possible. There must be lots of going out with friends, drinking venti latte's from Starbucks, and eating pounds of cheese fries.

When it comes to things like reading Harry Potter, however, I can skip over passages and not lose any information. I can also listen to my iPod, sing along with any of the embarassing music I have on it (like Hit Me Baby One More Time) or any of the cool music I listen to (like bands you've never heard of because that makes me awesome).

I had just begun reading Harry Potter, on the plane ride from Houston to Detroit and then Traverse City for this particular vacation. My aunt had been working on the book for longer and had a lot more read.

Her kids, and my adorable cousins, decided that my aunt and I needed to race through the book, see who was the better reader.

They figured they would help me along as they were betting on me to win.

It ended up that my cousins stopped asking me to play with them until I was done reading. Instead they would tell me to go read while simultaneously stretching my aunt's arms out until she could no longer hold onto the book due to how rubbery her arms were. Then she would head into the water and wait for the coldness to return her arms to their former glory.

I finished first in about two, maybe three, days.

It's so beautiful to see young children learn how to pick a winner and cheat the system.

The next time a Harry Potter book came out, I read it in under 48 hours while playing with my cousins and sleeping a lot.

What can I say? I have talent.


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