A bit of catching up with Booking Through Thursday. I’ve been gone for the weekend so no book reviews. In fact, I’m reading three books at the same time: Good Christian Bitches by Kim Gatlin, Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin (can’t believe I haven’t read it), and The Family Heart: A Memoir of When Our Son Came Out by Robb Forman Dew. Since friends are visiting, the Maupin book and the many places it highlight are truly resonating.
Do you consider yourself an extrovert or an introvert?
I am a bit of both, depending on the company and situation. In a huge party I’m usually more withdrawn because I’m more comfortable with a small group of friends. So if it’s somewhere I feel comfortable, I can be extroverted. People who don’t get to know me very well assume I’m an introvert because I’m always lost in my books. In fact, I was an introvert before I discovered the pleasure of books’ company. I can be very social in the right company, talking, laughing, and cracking jokes. But there are times I need to be completely withdrawn from the company and cultivate personal space–reading a book, taking a walk, and reflecting on my own. I find that necessary to maintain this healthy balance.
Do you have siblings? Do they like to read?
I have two but neither of them, by my standard and example, is a serious reader. They would leaf through magazines, read a book every once in a while, and peruse the newspapers. By the worldly standard, they are average readers. I never force it upon them but am happy to supply recommendation when it’s sought.
Has a book ever inspired you to change anything in your life, fiction or non-fiction alike?
A handful of books have shaped my feelings, touched me and helped me get in touch with myself. Fitness for Life by Mike Roberts completely turned my life around after I launched an exercise regime to lose weight. Exercises in this book do not always require huge gym machines so it is perfect for beginners and those who do not have access to gym membership. Covering: The Hidden Assault of Civil Rights by Kenji Yoshino was one book that validated my feelings as a gay human being living in American. is a work of impartiality and sentiment. Yoshino’s argument draws deeply on his personal experiences as a gay Asian American, two immutable aspects which he battles with assimilation. He favors authenticity of self that can only be achieved with an individual’s commitment to autonomy: the freedom to elaborate one’s true self rather than to some rigid notion of what constitutes an authentic (gay) identity.