• Bridge Ladies

    Bridge Ladies When I set out to learn about my mother's bridge club, the Jewish octogenarians behind the matching outfits and accessories, I never expected to fall in love with them. This is the story of the ladies, their game, their gen, and the ragged path that led me back to my mother.
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Tommy Can You Hear Me

Is it the same things if I say I read a book, but I listened to it on audio? If I said I had sex with Keanu Reeves, but I watched Point Break ten times. Is it the same? If I eat four pieces of pizza, can I count it as two on my tracker? I feel that if I’ve listened to a book on tape, I have to come clean and not pretend I read it. Reading is sacred. Difficult, challenging, engaging, intellectually and creatively stimulating. There is nothing interpreting the words for you in a book except your own sense and sensitivity. Your own intellect and imagination. I love audio books but they are baby sauce.

What’s your take on audio books?

9 Responses

  1. People should know stories any way they can. My first audio book was life of pi and it felt like twelve hours of mansplaining about a tarp. Reading it would have been better. But I’m still a fan.

  2. With reading, I go at my own pace. I’ve listened to a few short stories but had to rewind and re-listen many times.

  3. “What’s your take on audio books?”

    Much the same as yours, except for the Keanu Reeves part.

  4. The only time I ever listened to an audio book was while I was riding down the road with my husband (who is not a reader of books, but of newspapers, periodicals, etc.)and we were listening to one of mine. It’s the only way he would have ever “read” one of mine.

    My mind is too jumpy for it. If I ever listen to a book, it would have to be while on a walk, or stuck in a vehicle – b/c otherwise, I’m distracted by just about anything.

    Also, I like seeing/soaking in the words, getting my own sense of rhythm of the story – so what I’m saying is ditto to your take on them. “Baby sauce” describes it perfectly.

  5. Hey Betsy, first time commenter, long time listener—I mean reader, ha ha—of your missives. I felt irresistibly inclined to have an opinion about this. I find audio books (Audible.com if that counts towards ad points) brings me an entirely new dimension of a story. It’s like supplemental vitamins. Totally unnecessary and yet, I never regret listening in the dark to what I’ve read under a light, in another voice, especially if the accent is legit to the story. Reading Anne Enright now and my brain doesn’t do an Irish brogue without support. If the author is the reader, and has any ability whatsoever, it can really deepen the experience. Mind you, I try always to read the book as well. But together, you have cookies and ice cream, gin and tonic, ham and cheese. Unless it is from my insomnia collection, aka “nonfiction,” which can stand alone in the dark, hopefully for less than 30 minutes till it does the trick. No need for supplemental typography. I’ll bet good money that my Audible collection is bigger than all of yours put together. I shouldn’t brag. I just want someone to hear me that way.

    • Thanks for coming out from behind the curtain. You never know when audiobooks are going to touch a nerve! Please stick around. Lots of room in the loony bin. For the record I’m listening to the Paul Newman memoir read by Jeff Daniels. So good. Occasional other voices chime in that are kind of meh but Daniels is gold standard.

  6. not sure. I’m too busy reading. I know they save you time. But I’m gonnae die anyway.

  7. Not for me with some exception.

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