Remembering Dick


Nelson from Quo Vadis kindly tapped me to do the "bedside table" meme (which Rachelle originated). I blogged for almost two years without doing a single meme, and now I've done two within the last month; what is the world coming to? 

The meme is simple: list what's on one's bedside table. We've done similar writing exercises in workshops I've taught (I encourage students to offer a glimpse of a character, or of themselves, through the contents of a wallet or wastebasket) so perhaps this bedside table thing will offer you some insight into what my life looks like.

For starters, I guess I should explain that I don't really have a bedside table.

Our bed is low to the ground, futon-style; Ethan built simple shelves around it, beams on standards, going all the way up the wall behind our heads. The nicest thing about the shelves is that they concentrate our clutter -- books, vases, odds and ends -- above and beside us, so when we're lying in bed we look out over a room that's tidy and serene. (That's the theory, anyway.) So what serves as a bedside table is actually a shelf, roughly at mattress-height.

If you were standing in my bedroom, looking at my bedside shelf, you would see a lamp (simple, black, swing-arm), a ring-holder (a heavy glass base, sleek and vaguely heart-shaped, with a rounded nub on which my rings rest at night), a water glass (purple plastic and goblet-shaped, with a clear stem), a clock-radio (white, cubiform, perennially tuned to our local NPR affiliate), and a round lidded basket.

At the far end of the shelf there's a pile of books and magazines, including Doonesbury's Greatest Hits, Leonard Nimoy's I Am Spock (which I bought for a buck at a yard sale, and which was surprisingly entertaining, though I never got very far), Neil Gaiman's The Sandman: Endless Nights, the March/April 2004 issue of Tikkun, Hanne Blank's anthology Shameless, and Secrets of the Gnomes by Wil Huygen and Rien Poortvliet. The stack wasn't intentional; it just grew there, and now that I've described it I'm going to go shelve most of these elsewhere.

Notably not by my bedside is the book I'm actually reading at the moment, the Penguin Classics translation of the Koran. (I've found that it's not particularly well-suited to bedtime reading; it requires more alertness than I generally have at the end of the day, especially reclining and verging on sleep...)

And there you have it.

In lieu of tapping anyone to do the meme, I'll invite any of my readers who follow my lead (or who've done this one already) to post the URL in comments, if they care to.

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