After somewhat groggy thinking this morning, I decided to introduce the tag: Banana Books.
And, after some more slightly focused thinking this afternoon, I thought, “why not create a stamp for all the books that fall under that category?”
So here’s the stamp:
This stamp is here to save you time and to indicate when I do not like a book. If you base your reading habits solely on what I approve or don’t approve, the Banana Book stamp lets you know when to pass by a book.
Of course, I realize this is entirely based on my opinion alone, so if you’re an intelligent reader, ignore this stamp and read the book anyway.
Whatever floats your boat . . .
Totes your goat . . .
Or totes your boat while floating your goat. . .?
Why A Banana?
I am perfectly aware books are not bananas. They are not even in the same category of inanimate objects.
On one hand, you have a bunch of pages with words collected and assembled in a presentable pile of awesome. On the other, you have a thick-skinned fruit which browns and liquefies as it ages.
I am also aware some people LOVE bananas. They can’t get enough of them. They eat them on a regular basis as if eating a banana were a natural part of life.
I, on the other hand, dislike bananas and am comparing them to books for the following reasons.
It Has Benefits!
The number one argument in favor of bananas is health benefits. For example, did you know bananas are high in potassium?
According to the USDA, a medium banana supplies 422 mg potassium. And of course, the FDA has determined “diets containing foods that are good sources of potassium and low in sodium may reduce the risk of high blood pressure and stroke.”
Obviously, bananas are good for you. But no matter how many facts and studies you throw at me, I still don’t like them. I dislike the flavor, the texture, and even the smell of bananas.
Similarly, certain books have a lot to offer. Some books have unique insight in the human experience. Others utilize intriguing stylistic choices to emphasis their point. While still more books have an unusual take on an age-old argument which brings to light some sort of philosophical question that uncovers . . . you see where I’m going with this.
No matter how many times I read a book or how many times I try to break down the author’s point or attack it from a different angle, some books are the literature equivalent of a banana.
I don’t like the characters, or the plot, or the setting, or some other aspect about the book. I don’t even have a sufficient argument against it – I simply didn’t like it. And that’s the end of that.
They Are Hidden Everywhere . . .
Some people try to convince me I’ll like bananas if I give them a chance.
I must contest that line of thinking by asserting I HAVE given bananas plenty of chances to win my approval, and they have failed every time.
For example, a friend once asked me to sleep over. The next morning, we ate pancakes.
On another occasion, someone offered me a loaf of bread. I love bread. I love bread almost as much as I love chocolate. But banana bread?
Now, instead of loving bananas in all its various forms, I eat food with a mild sense of paranoia. I worry that someone will hide a banana in my meal.
To continue with my analogy, the same goes with books.
Books, like food, come in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and categories: from cute and colorful baby books to thick, tiny-print books that will crush your arms with their size. You can find romance, fantasy, science fiction, historical fiction, non-fiction, murder mystery – you name it, it probably exists.
However, I’m sure I can also find a banana in every single genre, so to speak.
Essentially, a banana book feels or “tastes” off to me. As I work my way through it, I begin to realize, I don’t like something about it. Occasionally I can spot the banana, the odd development of character or the poor organization. But even if I can’t see the banana, I KNOW IT’S THERE AND I DON’T LIKE IT AND NEVER WANT TO SEE IT AGAIN.
Thus the banana stamp.
Don’t Worry – You Can Still Like Them
You are more than welcome like bananas. You have that right.
You also are more than welcome to like books I don’t like. You also have that right.
In fact, if you offer me banana bread and I politely refuse, it’s not because I hate you as a person or your cooking. I’m merely saving us the pain of me having to eat a banana and allowing you the pleasure of eating an entire loaf of banana bread, no sharing required.
If you like a book that gets a banana stamp, I don’t hate your opinion. In fact, if you want to share something about the book in the comments section, then by all means, start a discussion.
Just allow me to hate my bananas and my banana books in peace.