I read an article ages ago about a man who had read all of Jane Austen's novels except one. He considered himself to be one of Jane Austen's greatest fans yet despite this (or because of this) he wasn't prepared to read the last novel (Pride and Prejudice, as it happened).
At the time I thought the guy was a bit of a loon; why deny yourself the pleasure of reading every word published by your favourite author? What can't be gained by drinking deep of the Pierian Spring, etc?
It appears a great deal can be gained by not drinking deep, at least not at a second helping.
As a recent sufferer of nostalgia I've been revisiting some books and movies from yesteryear and found them to be, sadly, not what I remember them to be.
First I re-read what I thought was one of my favourite books, Possession by A. S. Byatt. While I loved the fictional poet (see my obsession with lovely poet-boys as per yesterday), I struggled with the heroine, the postmodern hurdy-gurdy, the late '80s fashions.
Then I watched what I thought was one of my favourite films, or trilogy of films, Three Colours: Blue, White and Red. It turns out they're a bit boring (except Blue, which still moderately bewitches me thanks to Juliet Binoche).
And don't even start me on music. An evening's home-DJing on New Year's Eve left me with no illusions as to the music I used to love.
So where to from here? Books will only be read once, films seen once, music listened to until I don't wake up each day dying to hear it again. At that point I'll put it all in a box and take it up to Newtown to sell at the Saturday markets.
So that Ian McEwan, nice hard-cover, hey; in fine condition too. For you? $3. What do you say?