Wednesday, January 6, 2016

The Book on Books

‘Oh my god! He’s reading a book!’

ST. MUMBLES, California — That rumbling off the Pacific Coast, first reported as a 4.5-magnitude undersea tremblor, and then feared to be North Korea’s bomb test, has now been traced to the remote rock occupied by the sanitarium holding The WORD.

St. Mumbles, former Addams Family vacation retreat.
Incarcerated for a month-long drying out period, the global purveyor of blather, Today’s WORD on Journalism, is reported to be waking up, according to worried staff at St. Mumbles Home for the Terminally Verbose.

“He’s been in the Omphaloskepsis Unit,” said an attendant who asked not to be identified. “Pretty quiet, despite everything. But then, well, I guess we forgot to Go Set a Watchman over the book cart.”

It had been somewhat vainly hoped that confining The WORD incommunicado would detox the serial gadfly from quotable material from The Donald, so-called “armed ranchers” and other whackos, and the kindly white-coated staff regularly tossed the inmate’s sound-proofed cell for cell phones, iPads and other links to the troubled outside world.

“We didn’t think about books,” confessed Chief of Verbosity Containment Philip O’Shaddup. “Apparently there was a big box from Amazon backed into his Christmas pudding.”

Indeed, it appears books are everywhere, once again infesting a world that had been intellectually contained by Tweets, texts and Faux News. End-of-year reports show that the sale of subversive paper in the form of books is actually on the rise again, like a rash that just won’t go away, says Lillian the Librarian at the Ray Bradbury Center for the Burned Book.

“571 million print books were sold in 2015, 17 million more than the year before,” she said.

So books are back in 2016. The WORD will be too, “the sooner the better,” said O’Shaddup. “Fair warning. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.”


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