Step away from the books…


Melissa Stagnaro

Easter is just over a week away, and let me tell you, I can’t wait. It’s not the anticipation of chocolate bunnies and colorful eggs that has me counting down the days. No, it’s the fact that Easter Sunday marks the end of Lent. This year, those 40 days seem to be lasting forever.

While many Catholics give up chocolate, sweets or booze for Lent, I chose a different route. I gave up buying books. (So, First Edition – if your profits are down since the end of February, you know why.)

This may seem like an odd thing to give up, or an easy one, but I assure you it is truly a sacrifice for me. I have something of a book “habit,” if you will. Something anyone who knows me well can attest to.

I didn’t give up reading books (perish the though), just buying them. I’ve been subsisting since February 25 on library visits, the dusty books on my parents’ bookshelves and loans from friends. It hasn’t been easy, but I’m getting by.

I’m not very good at the whole temptation thing, so I’ve had to steer well clear of bookstores, and even the book aisle at the grocery store. I’m just too weak. (As evidenced by a recent trip to Walmart which almost ended in disaster when I mistakenly cut through the book department on my way to greeting cards.)

I have allowed myself the indulgence of browsing the new releases and bestsellers list on the Barnes and Noble website, but only after making sure my credit card was safely secured.

Now that I’m in the home stretch, I know I need to be more careful. I can’t afford any indiscretions this late in the game.

Think of me on April 12, as you are celebrating the holiday with your friends and family. While you’re digging into your Easter baskets and hunting for colored eggs, I’ll be loading up on books by the armful.