My husband has a strange routine whenever he gets a book or newspaper. He’ll hold it up to his face and inhale deeply to take in the smell of the print. It struck me as odd at first but then I understood that, as somebody who really enjoys reading, he was just appreciating the aroma of the written word. That is, until I introduced him to the wonders of the library. (I have always loved the library; where else can you actually get something for basically nothing? Really, what’s not to love?)
Before we got married my husband never went to the library but I finally persuaded him of its magical freebie powers. So now he’ll get a book from the library, hold it up to his face and take a deep whiff only to grimace, looking like he’s just smelled something foul. He doesn’t seem to get that hundreds, perhaps thousands, of people before him may have borrowed this book and done who-knows-what with it. I mean, seriously, people take books into the bathroom all the time. He can’t seem to help himself though and he continues to smell the books even though it makes him gag.
Continuing his obsession with print, whenever we go away my husband insists on buying newspapers from the area. I guess it never occurred to me to wonder about this practice until we went to Berlin and he actually bought 2 local papers every day. Every Single Day. You might be wondering what’s wrong with that…so the man likes to be informed, big deal. Yes, except he doesn’t read German. Not a word of it. So he’d buy these newspapers, sniff them, maybe look at some of the pictures and then just carry them around all day.