Stirrings of Memory While Reading an Assignment
While reading Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia, I’ve suddenly remembered that I often fell in love with the books in the theatre department of our high school. You see, there were lots of old books on the shelves of the infamous Green Room of that theatre. They were the ample source of pulling last-minute props, but they were rarely used for actual final set peices, so they all sat on the shelves of the Green Room for most of the time. Of course, we’re all crammed into the Green Room for performances, but other than then, the room was used for storage. I fell in love with these books while sitting on someone’s lap on a falling-apart couch that was rumored to have lots of experience in sexual affairs, in the corner of the tiny room filled with teenagers trying to be quiet and simultaneously trying to keep themselves from rotting away from boredom. At the same time of being endangered of rot, we were also bouncing off the walls because of all the glorious backstage energy that happens in a theatre. I was also prone to that energy, and being a very tactile person, my nervous hands fell to these books. They were mostly Reader’s Digest Condensed books, just because they all have the look of being old and well-to-do books and yet completely worthless, but my hands fell particularly in favor with a very thick hardcover book with handsome red cover and gold lettering on the side. Someone might have shoved it into my hands to accompany my character in the play (Chava in Fiddler) who is especially quiet and yet ponderous, but before long, my mind became bored and restless, so I opened the book and started reading. I borrowed it during the show and took it home to read- nobody missed it- and returned it half a year later. The book ended up being The Agony and the Esctasy by Irving Stone. Our unimportant theatre department owned a classic in its props collection. I was, and stil am, astounded.