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I hate books

Earlier this month, I moved for the seventh time in eight years. My mom says I've filled up a page in her address book; a family friend recently told me that when she thinks about me, she always imagines me amid boxes. I maintain that moving a lot doesn't make me especially unusual -- a friend of mine recently moved out of her apartment, stayed away for six months, and moved back in again, a sort of real estate Grover Cleveland. But constantly having to transport my possessions across town and across the country has led to certain uncomfortable realizations. The most recent among them: I love reading, but I hate having books.

Books are heavy. They're bulky. When you finish one, it's suddenly useless, and you have to carry it around for the rest of the day, or the rest of your vacation. When you move, it's one more bricklike object driving up the cost. Move two of seven for me was a cross-country one, and shipping a dozen boxes of books to my new address cost hundreds of dollars. Then I had to cantilever each box down the stairs to my basement apartment using a rolling backpack. After that I've never forgotten how quickly an entertaining read becomes a millstone.

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