Monday, November 18, 2013

Hi! I'm Troy a recovering non-reader.

Welcome to my new blog where I will be discussing things I find interesting. Those things can vary but usually cluster around great books, education, culture, reaching adolescents, philosophy, and at times theology. My name is Troy and I have been a recovering non-reader for about two decades now. That means that I was able to make it through college and almost to a masters program reading as little as I possibly could while getting by. Oh, it is true that I learned to read in elementary school, and my mom did occasionally coerce me from outside to come in to read my "favorite" Encyclopedia Brown books. But truth be told, I would have much rather read a Cliff's Notes (and did) than actual books (recently I re-read All Quiet on the Western Front to replace in my brain, what Uncle Cliff wrote about it). Like many, I thought the the goal was the A or B on my final report card (I got in trouble for Cs), and many of the books assigned had much more in them than the plot, characters, conflict, theme, and resolution. All of those could easily be gotten from some nifty summary materials. Since I am old enough not to have had the internet, I was at a serious disadvantage compared to today's kids in my self-inflicted education truncation.

What happened? A good friend (those pesky English majors) sent me To Kill a Mockingbird for Christmas. I read it and liked it. I really liked it! I actually related to Scout and Jem, but I wanted to grow up to be Atticus. That friend remembered me the following Christmas and sent Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. I read the whole thing!--it was actually pretty short. I later went into education and then into classical education and became passionate about connecting ideas and watching our students begin to light up when they read and discussed a great book. Now I read books on culture (especially that culture influencing adolescence), philosophy interspersed with great stories, and psychology and sociology. Since I am a recovering non-reader, I have had to play catchup and have a lifetime ahead of me to keep reading, relating, cogitating, and exploring. I invite you to join me as I share some random and occasional coherent thoughts.