Five - A Book That Influenced My Life #MFRWAuthor #BlogHop

Rachel Carson's Silent Spring


Hello, everyone, and HAPPY GROUNDHOG DAY!

Welcome back to Week 5 of the MFRW Author Blog's 52-Week Blog Challenge.

This week, we're asked to discuss: A Book That has Influenced My Life

The word 'influenced' threw me for a time, and it wasn't until I began to query others that the dawning of realization hit.

Honestly, I am one-track minded when it comes to books.

Books = Romance Novels to my mind, and I have yet to read one that made me sit up and think, "Y'know, it's about time I did something like this in order to better myself!"

LOL

Also, at my age, I don't necessarily read to 'learn' anymore... and I know that sounds odd or wrong to most, but bear with me, please.

When we were on the topic of Earliest Memory, I should have mentioned my earliest Reading experience when I was probably late three or four.

I was on my father's lap, helping him turn the pages of a book I think was called "G the Goat" but don't quote me on that.

I only recall that it was a beautiful powder blue with a white goat prancing near a large letter G with the Title kind of curved around him.

I clearly recall the illustrations and some of the words, because about half-way through my father's reading of the Golden Book, I had to stop him and ask, "When are you going to say Six?"

Because I believed the g's were 6's.

So, to my young mind it was Six the Goat and not G. πŸ‘§

The point is, instead of just enjoying the story (or getting a life lesson from it), my little mind was stuck on a minor dilemma.

Is this being overly analytical or extremely logical or just plain dumb?

The world may never know, but I've always felt that everyone (and, I do mean everyone) sees, hears, does, and thinks an entirely different way from me.

So, aside from textbooks handed to me in school, I've never presumed that anything written outside an educational setting will do me any good (or harm).

They are just words grouped together to form a story, and to me, this equates to nothing more than being entertained, terrified, grossed out, or bored.

Cookbooks are considered textbooks and so are autobiographical materials, newspapers, and magazines.

Everything else is pure entertainment in one form or another and I never, ever go into a novel with the idea that it is going to somehow teach me a valuable lesson or transform my way of thinking.

It has yet to occur at any rate.

In real life, yes.

Much of what I know and believe stems from observation and not at all from anything I've ever read.

I've read a few fictional novels and, yes, romance novels, that have greatly impacted my emotions or that transported me, body, soul, and mind, into the author's dimension for the duration of the read, but I have yet to come away from those types of novels feeling somehow different.

That being said, I'll now answer this week's Challenge topic.

Silent Spring by Rachel Carson.

I was in the ninth grade, highly impressionable, acutely insecure, and also a budding bookworm.

My favorite place to hide was the library, be it at school or the local Public branch I was able to walk to and get home without incident.

Now, why I have an issue with the word Influenced is that, I was just a kid when I read that novel, and prior to having read it, hadn't given environmental issues much thought, except to know what ecology, pollution, and industry meant and how they all worked together to create a big mess for the planet and its inhabitants.

After reading about the way things worked (it was written in 1962), I remember staring into space for a time, thinking about everything she'd just told me about the way things were, why they occurred, and the resultant horrors in its wake.

Shortly after this was when people began to hire chemical lawn service (early 80s) and suddenly the frogs and toads that used to be in abundance in our yard simply vanished.

No more garter snakes, field mice, or even crickets.

And the fireflies that used to number in the thousands (because we live across the street from a big park) dwindled down to a handful and then less than a dozen per night.


Japanese Forest


Idiots.

Morons.

Stupid people choosing to do a stupid thing just to keep dandelions at bay.

I was and still am outraged whenever that chemical truck rolls down the street, and sadly, the neighbors surrounding us not only rely on the chem truck but also Scott's and whatever else foul-smelling they can find to dump on their lawns.

Every spring and part of the summer I become physically ill when I go outside and get a whiff of that noxious chemical smell.

HOWEVER

While I'm still a proponent of environmental issues and side with those who believe artificial means of sustaining a pristine lawn are ridiculous, my way of thinking about Global Warming are starting to come full circle.

I went from consuming everything I could possibly read in order to better understand the issue, its culprits, and the resultant disasters it poses to wondering if, perhaps, things aren't quite so bad as I had previously believed.

Just last week, while subbing for a 5th Grade TAG class (talented and gifted), I was browsing their Scholastic Math magazine while the kids worked, and one of the articles was about the massive break-away that occurred at the South Pole just last year.




It said the iceberg was roughly larger than Delaware.

Hmm.

Delaware, you say?

My mind instantly conjured up the size of earth and all its bodies of water (for comparison purposes), and when the numbers didn't jibe in my head, I politely asked the brainy kids for an explanation.

How is an iceberg that small (by comparison to the earth's oceans) going to have such an immense impact on the planet?

Isn't it more like comparing a drop of water into a nearly full glass?

Sure, there'll be a ripple, maybe, but devastating impact?

The brainiacs insisted that iceberg, when melted, would fill 'all' the oceans with trillions of gallons of water based on size and density.

Trillions... from a berg a little larger than Delaware... melting in the Indian, Pacific, Atlantic oceans?

Perhaps because I'm NOT a brainiac, my mind can't fathom there being as huge an impact as scientists want me to believe.

Now, if ALL of the North Pole or MUCH of the South Pole were to melt... well, NOW we're talking danger.

I'd also like to think that we are capable of shipping our friends, the Polar Bear, down south in order to save them.

SO

Maybe it isn't so much the word Influence as it is the word Book that has me a bit confounded this week.

Books don't seem to Influence me as much as real life does, but a Book is capable of Impacting me emotionally if it is well-written.

And, while I still believe Rachel Carson's Silent Spring had an Influence in My Life, I am also saying that, with time, things and people and minds can change.

And it isn't likely I'll ever find myself to be Influenced by a Romance Novel's 'message', either.




As always, I thank you for stopping by and reading my post!



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Comments

  1. Like you the word influence threw me. Silent spring was a good choice. And I also miss the fireflies.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Influence is a strong word and I worried I wouldn't be able to come up with something for this week's post. I managed. Not a profound message (by rarely do I have those) but got the post done.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Silent Spring was a revelation to me, too. Very important and influential book as it first raised the public's awareness of environmental degradation. And gosh, fireflies. I haven't seen any in years, not since I lived in Pennsylvania. I loved them when I was a kid. We don't seem to have any here in So. Cal.

    ReplyDelete

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