Past Perfect

February 5, 2009 at 8:33 pm | Posted in Books | 1 Comment
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Two of the central tenets of my life are that Present Me inherently trusts Past Me and Future Me is entirely beholden to Present Me. Allow me to elaborate.

I am a keeper of lists. Lists and notes, actually. Time-stamped, due-dated, lists and notes. Throughout the day, every day, I assign myself tasks to be completed at some future date. In turn, every morning I am greeted with a fresh list of to-do’s for that day.

I frequently don’t remember assigning myself these tasks, or even understand why I would. But I do them. Always.

Every. Single. One.

My theory is that Past me would not have told me to go to this particular website or to call this particular person on this particular day without a well thought-out reason. Since I can’t remember why I am doing these tasks, I can only trust that Past me had a good reason. I just can’t imagine that he would steer me wrong.

cb46619009a0df8f388b4110lWhich brings me to the point of this blog. One of the lists (the many, many lists) that I keep is a list of books that I should read. I populate this list based on recommendations from friends, book reviews, stories on the radio, and anywhere else that book recommendations spring forth from. It is this list that this day led me to the purchase of Zadie Smith’s White Teeth.

A mere fifty pages in, this book is quickly becoming one of the best things that I’ve read in quite some time. The structure, the style, the characters – they are quite good. Unless this book ends with a punch in the mouth (and that would be an achievement in its own right) I think that it will become one of my favorites.

As this book was on the top of my “Books to Read” list, the implication is that I was given this recommendation recently, yet I am unable to recall from where, or from whom. So, if you told me about this book, I thank you. If you did not, then you should read it. I think you will like it.

Meanwhile, Present Me is commanding Future Me to pick up her next book.

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