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i have the tea kettle to prove it

March 18, 2009

I saw a headline on WoodTV8’s website today that caught my eye: 10 Books People Lie About.  At first I was surprised that anyone would lie about reading a book, but when I read the list, I realized people do it to sound intelligent and accomplished.

10 books people lie

“1984” tops the list

LONDON – You can admit it. You may have said you read it, but you never read “1984” or “War and Peace.” Relax there are others who have also lied about reading these and other books.

According to a survey by Spread the Word , a British reading advocacy group, 65 percent of people lie about having read certain titles. “1984,” “War and Peace” and “Ulysses” are the top three novels. The Bible is No. 4 on the list.

From the Guilty Secrets survey these are the top 10 books that people say they’ve read, but haven’t.

1. “1984” by George Orwell
2. “War and Peace” by Leo Tolstoy
3. “Ulysses” by James Joyce
4. The Bible
5. “Madame Bovary” by Gustave Flaubert
6. “A Brief History of Time” by Stephen Hawking
7. “Midnight’s Children” by Salman Rushdie
8. “In Remembrance of Things Past” by Marcel Proust
9. “Dreams from My Father” by Barack Obama
10. “The Selfish Gene” by Richard Dawkins

Also, 41 percent say that they have turned to the last page to find out what happens before finishing the book. But 96 percent admit that have stayed up late to finish a book.

Now, I will tell you with the utmost honesty that I have read two of the books listed above from cover to cover and large chunks of two others.  Look again at numbers 1 – 4.

I will be the first to admit I have not read the Bible all the way through.  I’ve read a lot of it, but not the entire thing.  And I read excerpts of Ulysses in high school.  1984 was also read in high school, but I read the whole thing.  Just ask my friend Ryan Malynn.  She’ll tell you.  We both loved that book and were quite nerdy about it.  It has been on my re-read list but I haven’t gotten to it yet.  My biggest accomplishment from the list is War and Peace.

Several years ago, I decided I wanted a challenging book and settled on War and Peace.  I have two ways to prove that I read the whole book: 1) I don’t pretend to like the book.  On the contrary, I didn’t like it at all.  It was the most difficult book I have ever read.  I was over halfway through the book before I found a character I was mildly sympathetic to.  I would have never made it through if it weren’t for 2) my reward.  I knew War and Peace would be a major undertaking and I wanted to make sure I finished the book.  So I promised myself that if I finished, I would buy myself an electric tea kettle.  As silly as it sounds, that electric tea kettle was just the motivation I needed to get through the entire book.  In those moments I wanted to give up, all I had to do was think about what life would be like with an electric tea kettle and I persevered.

Some people may lie about the books they read, but I don’t have to: I have the tea kettle to prove it!

6 Comments leave one →
  1. Cristin Luea permalink
    March 19, 2009 2:05 pm

    LOL! You’re wonderful! I haven’t read any of those books cover to cover…I’m honest too.

  2. rosarioguadalupe permalink
    March 19, 2009 4:27 pm

    I can vouch for you reading War and Peace!
    Not only have I enjoyed the fruits of your labor by using your electric tea kettle but I also had to listen to your ‘frustration’ as you read it. It took up a lot of conversation and if that wasn’t enough sometimes I had to carry or hold the book and that thing is stinkin heavy!

    Why anyone would lie about reading a book especially those listed above is beyond me! I can proudly and honestly say that I have never read any of the books on that list! Of course the proof of that shows on my blog and that my posts contain photo’s and not words!

    You are amazing Ceci! Te amo mucho! ~Besos

    • March 19, 2009 4:47 pm

      Rosario, very true, but did you even read the list? Did you see #4? I know you haven’t read the whole thing but like me have read major chunks of the Bible. :)

      And, Cristin… though you haven’t read those specific books, I know a good many that have passed under your eyes. :)

  3. rosarioguadalupe permalink
    March 19, 2009 6:14 pm

    Right! I have read a lot of the bible, I will gladly admit to that one. As for the rest…fuggitaboutit! ;)

  4. Felipa permalink
    March 20, 2009 10:20 am

    And I will also testify that you read War and Peace. You complained about it to me and the only reason you read it was that tea kettle which I see every time I visit you. And I know for a fact that both you and Rosario read the Bible, maybe not cover to cover but most of it. We would read it at the Dinner table remember.

  5. RaiulBaztepo permalink
    March 29, 2009 12:50 pm

    Very Interesting post! Thank you for such interesting resource!
    PS: Sorry for my bad english, I’v just started to learn this language ;)
    See you!
    Your, Raiul Baztepo

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