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Reading is(n’t) working

That big package that is Poetry Review….apparently The Poetry Review (as if package-bulk were not statement enough) flopped through the letterbox this weekend. So today I is mostly reading, which leads to the battle of the guilt gnomes:

Guilt gnome 1:   You should be writing.

Guilt gnome 2:   You need to read all this pile of stuff. Reading is work.

GN1:   OK I suppose reading is work – Read!

Me:    Alright, I’m reading….look at me, read read read.

GN2:   That’s no good, reading should be fun.

Me:   You just said reading is work.

GN2:   Maybe, but enjoy it!

Me:   You can’t order yourself to enjoy something – either you do or you don’t.

GN1:   I don’t know, consider Aristotle on moral character, you should train yourself to enjoy it.

Me:   Consider Wittgenstein – you can’t tickle yourself.

GN2:   Look, all these wonderful poets have sweated to give you these poems. It is your duty to enjoy them as poems. Very probably you can enoy them in ways vouchsafed to few other humans on this planet. You are well fed/housed and financially independent. If you can’t enjoy poetry who can?

GN1 [belligerent]:   This is getting out of hand. Just pretend reading is not work, only you do it in the time you have to work – like FaceBook or possibly Wimbledon.

Me:   Oh I wonder who’s about on Face…

GN1/2 [Unison]:    FaceBook is not work!!!