* A book buying addict, that is.
Dijana’s post on Saturday really got me thinking. I’m spend-thrifty by nature, there’s no denying that. I can’t help myself, and internet shopping and the joys of Paypal make that all the easier. I mean, I don’t even have to get up in hunt for my card anymore! If I can buy something, I will buy something, and bugger the consequences. So what if I’m going to be skint until next payday? And who cares about retirement?
Books are my biggest downfall. I could spend all my money on books and not give a single damn. It’s just so easy to justify to myself. Especially in real life shops. And especially charity shops and supermarkets, where the prices are so low that the books are practically begging to be bought.
Some days, I can come home with six or seven books. Once, I wandered through town for about an hour and came home with no less that 13 books. 13! And how many of those have I actually read? Probably four or five.
You see, the thing is, I buy them significantly faster than I can read them. And to make matters worse, I sometimes get bored of them before I’ve even picked them up. I mean, I see the same spines sat on my shelves day in, day out, and occassionally, I find myself wanting something new – something different – something I haven’t seen before.
So those poor, unread, and unloved books that have been sitting their the longest are less and less likely to be read as time goes on. I feel sorry for these books, I really do. They deserve to fulfill their bookish destinies, but I just can’t resist the glimmer and shine of a beautiful new cover and an author I’ve never read before.
And when I’m stood in that shop, five books in hand, trying to decide which one (one – haha) to buy, I don’t want any of them to lose out. Sure, I could make a note of the titles and authors, and come back to get them at a later date, but would I actually do this? Unlikely. It’ll be much easier if they’re already in my house, sat on my shelf, waiting patiently.
So, thinking about this over the last couple of days, I’ve decided I’m an addict.
Symptoms of Behavioural Addiction
- Restlessness – if I haven’t bought a book for a while, I definitely become restless
- Obsession or constant thought about the object – well, that’s self-evident, isn’t it?
- Resentfulness – one time, I was in Tesco with my dad. He talked me into buying only one of the three books I held in my hand. I’m still a little bitter about that. And those times when I haven’t got enough cash to buy all the books I want? Resentfulness comes out in full swing.
- Defensiveness – when someone (aka my husband) dares to accuse me of having too many books then he’d best watch out. Of course I haven’t got too many books. And so what if I haven’t read the ones I’ve already got?
- Continuation of behaviour despite negative consequences – does only having ‘beans on toast because you can’t afford more food for the rest of the week’ count as a
- Concealment – I hereby admit that I have occassionally sneaked a new book or seven into the house!
Of course, I don’t have all the symptoms of behavioural addiction. I don’t have a desire to stop, for example, and I don’t feel depressed when engaging in my behaviour, but I certainly tick several boxes. So I’m Riley, and I’m an addict.
Still, there are less healthy addictions to have, right? Right.
Are you an addict too?