[W]ords are more important than they ever were: we navigate the world with words, and as the world slips onto the web, we need to follow, to communicate and to comprehend what we are reading. People who cannot understand each other cannot exchange ideas, cannot communicate, and translation programs only go so far.
The simplest way to make sure that we raise literate children is to teach them to read, and to show them that reading is a pleasurable activity. And that means, at its simplest, finding books that they enjoy, giving them access to those books, and letting them read them.
The same could be said of local independent bookstores; the ones that you can wander into and plop down in a hidden corner and lose yourself in a book for a while. In my town this place is called [words] Bookstore, and if you’re lucky your town has one too. Unfortunately, however, the local town bookstore is a disappearing breed in the face of large-chain book-sellers and Amazon.com.
Well, luckily Mr. Gaiman now has an unlikely ally: Washington Nationals’ lefty closer, Sean Doolittle.
Jared Diamond recently reported for The Wall Street Journal, in his piece entitled “The All-Star Closer Who Is Trying to Save Bookstores,” that Sean Doolittle is seeking out an independent bookshop on every road city stop that the Nationals make this year, in an effort to support local businesses and literacy as well as to feed his voracious reading habit.
Today we went to Three Lives & Company bookshop in Greenwich Village. It’s such an awesome little bookstore tucked away in a really cool neighborhood. I really dug it’s cozy vibes – I’m going to have to make it part of my routine whenever we roll through NY. pic.twitter.com/lUvTdQPqyeDon’t like ads? Become a supporter and enjoy The Good Men Project ad free
— Obi-Sean Kenobi Doolittle (@whatwouldDOOdo) May 22, 2019
If you spend a few minutes listening to Doolittle or perusing his Twitter feed (he goes by the handle @WhatWouldDOOdo), a few things become readily apparent:
(1) He is a smart, charismatic and engaging guy;
(2) He looks a bit like Seth Rogen and is damned fun follow on Twitter, especially if you’re into Game of Thrones or Star Wars; and
(3) He is a voracious reader, who be a welcome addition to just about any local book club:
Here’s what I’ve read so far in 2019. It’s been a good year so far, with lots of great SFF. I’m currently working my way through the Shades Of Magic series and it’s really really good so far. pic.twitter.com/Io4bowRODR
— Obi-Sean Kenobi Doolittle (@whatwouldDOOdo) March 14, 2019
As to his continuing local bookstore adventures, he explains:
“I want to support these places that are active in their communities, that are trying to be supportive and inclusive spaces for their communities.”
To follow along and see all of the local bookstores that Doolittle has been exploring, check out this great running thread where he keeps an updated list of his visits, complete with pictures.
Each bookstore has such unique character and color, that they alone would be worth the road trip.
Photo Credit: Twitter/@InfieldChatter