Monday, December 30, 2013

Starting project not on New Year's Resolution list

Got going on a project that wasn't a New Year's Resolution.
That is, cleaning out my study.
Or "purging," as my wife put it as she made like a whirlwind going through her side of our walk-in closet. Since it's not wide enough for both of us to go cleaning out at the same time -- 300 Hawaiian shirts take up a lot of room -- I got busy on another room that needed it.
The fact the book case was buckling under the weight of all the books I'd stacked on it was a good sign that was the place to start.
Took me part of Saturday and most of Sunday, but I got 'er done.
Managed to fill up two cardboard boxes with old books I've read.
Deciding what goes and what stays was tough.
I've still got books my dad gave me and are like heirlooms.
Like, "Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee," Dee Brown's gripping book on the U.S. government's betrayals of the American Indian.
Or "Goodbye Darkness," a vivid memoir by William Manchester, a Marine like my father, who served in the Pacific during World War II.
Or Jimmy Breslin's hysterical, "The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight," fiction about mobsters in Brooklyn, N.Y., where I was born.
There are a bunch of sports books I kept, including "Always on the Run," Jim Kiick and Larry Csonka's memoir from the Dolphins' Perfect Season in 1972.
Then there are my Irish books, historical and fiction.
That includes Patrick Taylor's charming series that began with "An Irish Country Doctor" and continues with "An Irish Country Christmas" and so forth.
I've yet to read all of them.
The same can be said for books on Lincoln, Washington and Henry Clay, a colorful 19th century lawmaker  who has been called our greatest senator ever.
I'll get to them one of these days.
There are also books that were loaners from folks and I need to get them back.
Amazing what you find when you get serious about cleaning up and throwing things out.
Or purging.

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