Last night as the clock raced toward one a.m. I wanted to pull a Fred Flintstone, propping up my heavy eyelids with a couple of toothpicks. I was so close. A mere forty-thirty-twenty pages from the end of The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt.
It’s a big book, 771 pages. I don’t often commit to big books because I’m a slow, impatient reader with a short attention span. Big books often annoy me with their bloated, unnecessary authorial masturbation (this is me passive-aggressively bitching about Jonathan Franzen). Donna Tartt doesn’t have much of that. There’s one section, near the end, that went on a little longer than I thought necessary but I’m not sure if that’s because it was 11:30 at night and I wanted to finish or if it was actually too long.
After I made myself read every single word on the last ten pages, though my eyes totally wanted to skip entire paragraphs, I closed the book, wiped the tears off my cheek, and promptly tweeted about my accomplishment.
I felt like I needed a hug and a merit badge. A hug because the book kind of devastated me in all the good kinds of way a book can wreck you. I might go back and re-read those last few pages again because of what Tartt has to say about beauty and being true to yourself. Just thinking about it is giving me the goosebumps.
The merit badge was because I finished that big, huge book that took me roughly 38 years to read. Or at least it seems like it.
As I type these words, I am shedding a few tears again, and in need another hug and another merit badge for I have finished my viewing of the entire run of “Family Ties.” While not as honorable of an accomplishment as The Goldfinch, it is an accomplishment nonetheless. It takes a lot of dedication to get through all that 80s hair.
These two things combined with two different naps means that I’ve had a pretty wonderful, productive weekend. And there’s still one more day to go.