Being a bookworm is really NOT good for one’s social life. I’ve loved to read since I was in second grade (that’s when I remember reading my first chapter book on my own – I think it was one of the Ramona Quimby books). But having your nose in a book all the time does not make you popular.
Exhibit A: I am 10 years old. My family is on vacation in Tennessee, driving through the Smoky Mountains. I, of course, am reading a book. Out of the blue, my dad says, “Karissa! We’re driving through these beautiful mountains! You don’t get to see this view often! Put your book down and look out the window.” Even though my feelings are a teeny bit hurt, I oblige. After about a minute of taking in the view, I really want to go back to my book.
Exhibit B: I am 19 years old. My church college group is on a mission/fun trip to Los Angeles. We have rented a 12-passenger van and are driving to some church to paint and clean. I have a book to keep me occupied while we inch through traffic. I spend the rest of the trip getting made fun of for reading. Even when it’s my turn to sit shotgun and pick the radio station, I can’t decide and keep flipping through stations. I’m pretty sure the entire group shouts in unison, “Read, Karissa! Read!” As in, get the heck away from the radio dial and go back to your book, you nerd! (Lesson learned: Cool college kids don’t like books . . . or at least they don’t admit it.)
Exhibit C: I am . . . my age right now . . . we’ll say 29 (wink wink) and I’m sitting at a birthday party for my son’s classmate, thinking that kids’ birthday parties really make me feel like a socially awkward teenager again. Two parents near me are discussing this big production the school put on the week before. I was not able to attend it because I had to work, but I figure this might be my chance to edge into the conversation. “So did you like the K4 presentation?” I ask. The mom turns to me and said, “Oh, yeah, I thought they did such a great job and were so cute in their Chinese costumes. What did you think?”
Crap. Busted. “Well, actually, I wasn’t there. I had to work,” I admit.
Look of judgment from super-I’m-at-every-single-school-function-and-so-I’m-better-than-you mom.
My last attempt at saving myself: “So, have you read The Hunger Games?”
Epic Fail. I guess I’ll never be part of the “in crowd.”
But I’ll still love books.
*Thanks to my daughter for posing for a bookworm picture.