[Downsizing Zeal] One Free Book

“Oh, this one? You have to get one more book to go over $5…[1]” She motioned her eyes seductively. “Oh, really…?[2]” I wasn’t interested in purchasing any books and had just gone in to use a coupon good for one free book. “Lemme see. No. Just ring ‘im up.[3]” The transaction was over and after that, my free book, and first new book acquisition in months felt also like a study in subtle manipulation in sales.

Maybe she was actually looking to help?

When I “sell,” as in professionally when I have to pitch a suboptimal technical solution to a problem, I have to persuade in much that same way. I have to overcome the internal feelings where I know they’re not going to be back up and running by telling them I have a long-term solution which won’t exactly work for them in the short-term. Today, even, I had to convince a manager that our software on his personal hardware was an issue on his side, and that convincing took longer than it needed to because of how nuanced the problem was to troubleshooting.

Still, she was just a little too persuasive.

I wanted to get out of there, too. I was careful not to let my wallet’s eye linger too openly over the assorted goodies I would have gobbled up years ago. I focused on books, since I received a free book coupon on my previous donation drop-off, and it’d be crazy not to use it, right? I circled the classic literature, thought about getting a comedy book, but I just didn’t feel like I needed to read it. Other books would also collect dust in my book collection.

I have too many errant books collecting dust.

I resigned that coupon’s fate to another day. I’d circled the aisles maybe three times without success. It was only through happenstance that I found the book I had wanted and one I will read. I have yet to review the 4-Hour Workweek, but considering that it is currently one of my Top Ten Favorite Books, the 4-Hour Body should naturally follow the same format of mastering life through figuring out one base need. If one can master one’s sources of income, one masters business. If one masters one’s body, one masters reality.

This is what I anticipate this tome to contain.

There were other books, certainly, mainly the classics that will remain in every thrift store’s classic section for the next fifty years, chief among them a book on Darwin’s travels as a young man, which might have been an eventual curious read, but not particularly relevant to my lifestyle now – downsize and sell everything nonessential, sacrifice today’s ego for tomorrow’s future.

What if there had been books by Dostoyevsky or Murakami?

Well, to avoid hypotheticals or bragging, I’m committing to reading a substantive page a day until I’ve read through this book.

A book, unread, on a dusty shelf, won’t change your life or help you buy a better life.

Quotes: [1, 2, 3] A conversation between the cashier and me with her coworker or manager stepping in.
Sources: My personal experiences.
Inspirations: I was anticipating going to the thrift store for my first romp in months, and the introduction was completely organic. I captured that conversation in my car and wrote the rest throughout the evening.
Related: Other Downsizing Zeal essays.
Above: Side-view of the book, unread.
Below: Receipt, just for evidence, I suppose.
Written On: July 13th [26 minutes, mobile]
Last Edited: July 15th [Minor digi-typesetting into WordPress. Essentially: First draft; final draft for the Internet.]

My big goal is writing. My most important goal is writing "The Story." All other goals should work toward that central goal. My proudest moment is the most recent time I overcame some fear, which should have been today. I'm a better zombie than I was yesterday. I'm not better than you and you're not better than me. Let's strive to be better every day.