Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Book Review

In Praise of Slow by Carl Honore.

This is a very interesting book.

I assumed, on picking it up, that the book was going to be a fairly standard description of all the reasons why it's important to slow down and not worry so much about how quickly things are moving around us, that it would be a 200-pages of lecture on why the way that we live and the world that we've created are bad for our health.

But it's not that. The book doesn't ask the reader to make any unreasonably dramatic shifts in behaviour or attitude; the book simply asks that we think about the things that we do, and embrace opportunities, where they exist, to enjoy those things more completely. And then the book provides examples of the ways that other people and communities have put those thoughts into action, covering such topics as food, work, sex, health and exercise. And it's pretty hard to argue with the underlying theme of the book, which is that if we do a few things just a little bit slower, we might live longer and be happier. Hard to find fault with that, eh?

The book is not an overly technical or difficult read, and in fact, there is real joy in reading Honore's descriptive passages, especially those about Italian food. (DROOOL)

It's been kind of a tough month around here... WH and I have been going full steam with choral commitments for both Orchestral Choir and Chamber Choir this month, and we've had our bathroom renovation, and WH has been travelling, and we have the attempted sale of our house looming, winter won't seem to go away... it's just been very busy and we're both very tired. We suggested to each other that it might be time to find some activity that doesn't have anything to do with anything that we can just enjoy together in relative peace. I think the understanding that we have a choice in that, that we can choose to shut out the craziness around us and take time for ourselves, while a tough lesson, is the strongest message I took from Honore's book.

Wishing for you all some slow moments!


Mandy said...

this seems like a very interesting book ... and boy it sounds like you have been busy!! .. it feels like just yesterday you all had crazy schedule .. was it November???

anyway ... I think the slow lesson is one lesson we all need!!!

Sue said...

Looks good. I could use a slow moment or two...