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Revive a Dead Thread > What do you say to someone who says they have "no time to read?"

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message 1: by Kevin (last edited Mar 14, 2009 08:54AM) (new)

Kevin (ManchesterUnited) I hate that moment where you start telling someone about your addiction to goodreads and to good books and they smirk and say how they are way too busy to read. For example, I told my old boss my wife had just finished her 100th book for the year. He told me he thought it was selfish to read that many books. My answer to him is the reason he is no longer my boss. :0)
Other than throwing a book at these smirking illiterate Philestines, what should I say the next time this happens?



message 2: by Gabby (new)

Gabby R. All of my frinds are obcessed with reading. I have never had to hear anyone but my mom say she's too busy to read, and she actually is. She reads whenever she gets a chance.


message 3: by Kevin (new)

Kevin (ManchesterUnited) Gabby wrote: "All of my frinds are obcessed with reading. I have never had to hear anyone but my mom say she's too busy to read, and she actually is. She reads whenever she gets a chance."

Don't get me wrong, Gabby. I have no problem with someone who is incredibly busy, I only have an issue with those who look down on my reading because they choose NOT to read. I love this group because I can find people who feel the same way about books and reading that I do. Thanks and have a great day!


Elizabeth (Alaska) My answer to people who say they don't have time for (fill in the blank): We all have the same 24 hours in a day.

We make time for those things we think are important. People who look down their noses at other people, for any reason, will, hopefully, grow as individuals and learn there is room in this world for all of us.


message 5: by April (new)

April (booksandwine) | 954 comments My answer is "Yeah, that 2 straight hours of facebook stalking must really creep into your reading time. Those big words are a b--ch, aren't they" Granted, I'm a college kid and surrounded by college students, but yeah you choose what you do with your time. No one is holding a gun to your head saying you must choose to work here, you must choose to chair this committee you must choose to go to this bar at this time.

BTW I love the word Philestine, I'm going to have to start incorporating it more into my vocabulary.


message 6: by Keara (new)

Keara Clifford (KearaClifford) | 24 comments how can you not? Even on my busy days I always spent at least 30 minutes reading before I go to bed. But I guess that is just because I enjoy it. Its a good way to escape any problems you are having and read about a characters problems :)

APRIL: I agree with the facebook comment as a college student as well. Its amazing how much time people spend on that damn thing!!


message 7: by Becky (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) OK, I'm concerned with your boss's comment Kevin. Seriously concerned. Does he think that your wife is some kind of book killing Black Widow that must destroy the books that she's finished with? Does she erase the words from the page once she's turned it so that nobody else can read it again, ever?

How is it SELFISH to read 100 books? I mean, granted, your wife must be an incredibly fast reader to have finished 100 books in less than 3 months - or are we talking about a rolling year, March to March? But still, there is nothing selfish in ones choice of hobby. If a person likes doing carpentry work in their spare time, does it become selfish when they've created 10 birdhouses in a year? 20? 50? Who is he to judge your wife's spare time?

Elizabeth is right. We make time for the things that we love. I love reading, so I make time for it. Sometimes (Ok, often) to the neglect of other areas of my social life, as much as I don't want to admit it. Does that make me selfish if I choose to escape the daily grind in a different way than someone else?

To answer your question, when someone tells me that they are too busy to read, I just nod and smile, and stick my nose back into my book. There's no point in getting into a conversation with someone about their priorities, because if their priorities were similar to yours, they'd be reading and not bothering you. ;)


message 8: by Kevin (last edited Mar 14, 2009 12:36PM) (new)

Kevin (ManchesterUnited) laughing my head off! Actually the 100 books were in the rolling year, however now I will use your comments when that one comes up again. 2 hours of facebook stalking...still laughing. I SELFISHLY choose to read!


message 9: by Mosca (last edited Mar 15, 2009 07:12AM) (new)

Mosca | 828 comments Kevin,

I really empathise with you. I have a lifelong history of saying the "wrong" thing to a boss in a social situation.

But, really, it's no one else's business how you, I, or anyone spends his/her spare time, unless of course, it's defrauding investors, serial killing, or strangling kittens.

An enormous number of people in the U.S. (I don't know about the other nations) spend their spare time watching television(!!!), which, I am sure, we all will agree is an unselfish pursuit that will ultimately result in an end to world hunger and the harmony of all people on earth.

To quote that inestimable judge of moral worth and noted man of letters Groucho Marx:

"I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book."


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (SusannaG) | 1736 comments Well, I also watch television - I find it very relaxing when I'm knitting. (So far I am not able to knit and read simultaneously; though I am working on it!)


message 11: by April (new)

April (booksandwine) | 954 comments Mosca wrote: "Kevin,

I really empathise with you. I have a lifelong history of saying the "wrong" thing to a boss in a social situation.

But, really, it's no one else's business how you, I, or anyone spen..."


What a fantastic quote. That Groucho Marx is awesome!!




message 12: by Fiona (new)

Fiona (bookcoop) There's no such time as too busy to read. There's always time if you make it. And people who judge people on what they do with their time and think themselves superior need to go get themselves a life. Seriously!




message 13: by Kevin (new)

Kevin (ManchesterUnited) Susanna wrote: "Well, I also watch television - I find it very relaxing when I'm knitting. (So far I am not able to knit and read simultaneously; though I am working on it!)"

audible.com is your best answer to "read" and be able to knit at the same time.


message 14: by Magpie67 (new)

Magpie67 | 33 comments I just say....It's my thing I do best!

My Mom keeps telling me I should listen to books and do other things while listening. Ummmm the point is too relax.... She claims she is too busy to open up a book. Yeah right, you're retired! She never ran like I do with my kids in all the sports ever! I manage my time wisely and I don't worry so much about the dust and dirt.


message 15: by Anna (new)

Anna Shumaker (Annashu) My co-worker recently complained about how she used to love to read but now she is too tired. I understand that because she is almost 50 and works just as hard as I do at 25...but then I thought about it and really on my most exhausted days the best thing I imagine is getting home to curl up with my book. So I concluded that if someone claims to be too busy or too tired to read it is clearly not high on their priority list...


message 16: by Magpie67 (new)

Magpie67 | 33 comments Exactly..... A good book restores the tired soul in my body that work zapped. It melts my stress!


message 17: by Jeane (new)

Jeane | 4891 comments Elizabeth wrote: "My answer to people who say they don't have time for (fill in the blank): We all have the same 24 hours in a day.

We make time for those things we think are important. People who look down thei..."


My mother also wouldn't have time at all to read because she is too busy and not with things that she could leave. But we all make choices for ourself of what is imprtant for us. I can also be too busy to read but I choose to be busy reading instead and slowing down with everything that makes me too busy for it. Anyway, if I don't read for a day, it doens't matter how busy I am, I will feel so bad that I need to read.


message 18: by Jeane (new)

Jeane | 4891 comments April wrote: "My answer is "Yeah, that 2 straight hours of facebook stalking must really creep into your reading time. Those big words are a b--ch, aren't they" Granted, I'm a college kid and surrounded by colle..."

April, loved your first sentence! many times a lot of people who say they are too busy keep busy with things that make me wonder how they waist their time..


message 19: by Jeane (new)

Jeane | 4891 comments Kevin wrote: "laughing my head off! Actually the 100 books were in the rolling year, however now I will use your comments when that one comes up again. 2 hours of facebook stalking...still laughing. I SELFISH..."

I also don't get what is selfish for him...


message 20: by Jeane (new)

Jeane | 4891 comments Mosca wrote: "Kevin,

I really empathise with you. I have a lifelong history of saying the "wrong" thing to a boss in a social situation.

But, really, it's no one else's business how you, I, or anyone spen..."


Oh, from now on I will love Groucho!!!!!:-)


message 21: by Jeane (new)

Jeane | 4891 comments Fiona wrote: "There's no such time as too busy to read. There's always time if you make it. And people who judge people on what they do with their time and think themselves superior need to go get themselves a l..."

Maybe he finds it slefish that she reads 100 books that other people couldn't or something like that...


message 22: by Jeane (new)

Jeane | 4891 comments I still don't understand how the word'only' or 'just' always got inth e following sentences at home when I was a kid: you haven't done anything the whole day, you have only be reading. uhm...haven't I done something then? And actually something that for me is very interesting. I noticed that people complaining about people who read a lot or many times people who spend lots of time watching tv and eat in th emeantime. Nothing against it but if you complain about me reading.....I find more interesting things in books than on tv, especially the last years.


message 23: by Kevin (last edited Mar 15, 2009 08:55AM) (new)

Kevin (ManchesterUnited) Actually, I think my old boss said my wife was being selfish because she was taking that much time to "shut out the world...family, friends, kids." That is why I was so frustrated with his comments. Really it only meant he did not find books interesting and therefore no one else should either.
I have a great example of what books will do for someone...read, The Uncommon Reader A Novella to see the changes that occur to a person as she begins to become a reader as well as those people around her who do not understand her reading.


message 24: by Kevin (last edited Mar 15, 2009 08:53AM) (new)

Kevin (ManchesterUnited)
"Those are my principles, and if you don't like them...well I have others
Groucho Marx


message 25: by Magpie67 (new)

Magpie67 | 33 comments Kevin wrote: "
"Those are my principles, and if you don't like them...well I have others
Groucho Marx"



Wow though.... to say she was selfish? The polite comment would be, she must be a fast reader or very interested in books. Thanks for the update on the novel you listed. I have now added that one to my wish list.



Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (SusannaG) | 1736 comments Kevin wrote: "Susanna wrote: "Well, I also watch television - I find it very relaxing when I'm knitting. (So far I am not able to knit and read simultaneously; though I am working on it!)"

audible.com is you..."


I can't seem to get used to audiobooks, for some reason.


message 27: by Hayes (last edited Mar 16, 2009 03:42AM) (new)

Hayes (Hayes13) Mosca wrote: "Kevin,

I really empathise with you. I have a lifelong history of saying the "wrong" thing to a boss in a social situation.

But, really, it's no one else's business how you, I, or anyone spen..."


Brilliant Mosca!! (I love that quote by Groucho!!)

An enormous number of people in the U.S. (I don't know about the other nations)
...
Italy too!! Far too much!!
...
spend their spare time watching television(!!!), which, I am sure, we all will agree is an unselfish pursuit that will ultimately result in an end to world hunger and the harmony of all people on earth.

Oh yes, absolutely... it's a proven fact!! LOL!!




message 28: by Hayes (last edited Mar 16, 2009 03:51AM) (new)

Hayes (Hayes13) Kevin asked: Other than throwing a book at these smirking illiterate Philestines, what should I say the next time this happens?

no talk, action... *slap!* upside the head!! (just kidding of course...)

And congratulations to your wife (she added enviously) for having read so many books. I think it's a great accomplishment. I'm aiming for 50 this year.


message 29: by Laura (new)

Laura (QuestionableAdvice) I think people tend to be derogatory about things they secretly feel guilty for not doing themselves. If your ex-boss was truly indifferent to your wife's reading list he would have said something more general and not attacked her by describing it as "selfish". As another example, I'm not proud of it but I know that I have knee-jerk defensive reactions to people with clean houses, because I feel secretly guilty that I read instead of vacuuming.

Perhaps your ex-boss has lint-free carpeting and no dustbunnies under the bed?


message 30: by Hayes (new)

Hayes (Hayes13) ... and no dustbunnies under the bed?

In our family we call them "ghost turds", and as we are *all* big readers (and not so big on housework, nor fixated about it) we've got plenty of them!! ; )



message 31: by Brenda (new)

Brenda | 163 comments You know, this always fascinates me. My mom worked full time and raised a family and managed to read a little every day.

I have a co-worker who is always so condescending to me when I mention reading. She seems to feel that she is accomplishing the impossible...working and raising two children.


message 32: by Lori (new)

Lori I'm an English major. And the people I used to hang out with always showed off by dropping titles and names and I didn't join much in the conversation because I didn't know who they were talking about. I've found that I really don't like the time period of writing that they're talking about (and I don't hang out with them anymore).

But everyone else I'm around doesn't read much. My dad tries, but he'll decide he doesn't like a book because there's "too much cursing" in it, for which I chew him out because that's a pretty ignorant reason to dislike a book (especially if it's a military type book) and he's slowly learning. But my mom rarely reads and will get mad at me for sitting around on my butt all day reading when I'm on a break or for not going out with people because I want to read. It kind of hurts that she doesn't get that that is how I relax and enjoy spending my time.

I wish that everyone read more and didn't persecute people for reading more than them (or make them feel bad for reading different things than them).


message 33: by M.G. (new)

M.G. Hardie (MGHardie) | 30 comments Sometimes you have to give up something to really sit down and read. In our busy lives it is hard to choose what to give up. We usually give up reading. I find myself saying that all the time. And soon as I have the time to read I waste the next hour deciding on what to read, and then they goes my reading time. I feel like they aren't too many really great books out there that are worth a week of reading time.


message 34: by Anna (new)

Anna Shumaker (Annashu) I've often given up sleep and food in order to read. I don't think of a book being worth the time it takes to read, reading is a chance to escape (if the author is any good) or think about things I hadn't considered before.


message 35: by Lori (new)

Lori I'd happily give up sleeping or reading or bathing to read. I feel like those things waste a lot of my time.


message 36: by Karen (new)

Karen (karenvwrites) | 112 comments I read while waiting for an appointment-on bus trips and before i sleep at night(mostly at night)


message 37: by M.G. (new)

M.G. Hardie (MGHardie) | 30 comments i'm with ya lori, but society wont be.


message 38: by Catamorandi (new)

Catamorandi (wwwgoodreadscomprofilerandi) | 1046 comments Lately, I find myself giving GR a lot more time than reading. I just got some horrible news about my health. I need the companionship of GR now. I can't even concentrate on reading. I read five pages yesterday in The Thirteenth Tale, and I have no idea what it was about. I'll have to read them again when I am not so preoccupied with my problem. I just need other people who like books to talk to.


message 39: by Hayes (new)

Hayes (Hayes13) oh dear... and I know what you mean about not being able to concentrate... we're all here when you need to talk or send a message, just let us know!!


message 40: by April (new)

April (booksandwine) | 954 comments Perpendicularandi wrote: "Lately, I find myself giving GR a lot more time than reading. I just got some horrible news about my health. I need the companionship of GR now. I can't even concentrate on reading. I read five..."

Oh my. I hope things brighten up for you.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (SusannaG) | 1736 comments Lori - why not bathe and read?


message 42: by Lori (new)

Lori I'm usually a shower person and until they make a waterproof book, I can't. I don't get the time to take bubble baths very often. I wish I could just go through my day with my book in my hands...walking to class, cooking, making my bed. But I tend to run into things or do them very slowly when I try to read at the same time.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (SusannaG) | 1736 comments Yes, I don't read in the shower, either. The bath, yes, sometimes.


message 44: by Hayes (new)

Hayes (Hayes13) Lori wrote: "I'm usually a shower person and until they make a waterproof book, I can't......."

ziplock bag and clothes pins?

I could make millions with a new patent!!




message 45: by Becky (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) Hayes wrote: "ziplock bag and clothes pins?"

But how would you turn the pages?


message 46: by Catamorandi (new)

Catamorandi (wwwgoodreadscomprofilerandi) | 1046 comments Guess what? My concentration for books is starting to get better. I only read 17 pages of The Thirteenth Tale, but that beats single digit reading. I even remember what I read. Yay!! I'm back in business.


message 47: by Brittany (new)

Brittany (wifethatprays) Perpendicularandi wrote: "Guess what? My concentration for books is starting to get better. I only read 17 pages of The Thirteenth Tale, but that beats single digit reading. I even remember what I read. Yay!! I'm back i..."

Good to hear! I'm keeping you in my prayers, in hopes you feel better!



message 48: by Jessica (new)

Jessica | 1000 comments Lori, my mom is the same way with saying, "You've done nothing all day," when I have been reading. My fiance and I enjoy reading books to each other and she has also been known to say, "I wish you two would do something together other than read." OK, it's definitely not all we do and what's wrong with it?


Elizabeth (Alaska) Jessica wrote: "Lori, my mom is the same way with saying, "You've done nothing all day," when I have been reading. My fiance and I enjoy reading books to each other and she has also been known to say, "I wish you ..."

She actually wants you to do what other parents are trying to get their kids to stop doing?


message 50: by Jessica (last edited Mar 17, 2009 11:13AM) (new)

Jessica | 1000 comments LOL, I don't think she wants that either. Basically my parents are really big party-goers and social butterflies and she wishes we went out more. I do like going out but I more prefer to enjoy a quiet night at home.


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Books mentioned in this topic

The Uncommon Reader (other topics)
Goodnight Moon (other topics)
The Read-Aloud Handbook (other topics)

Authors mentioned in this topic

Groucho Marx (other topics)