She Loves Me, She Loves Me Not: A Kindle’s Valentine Lament
By GAIL FARRELLY

Hezi Aris Arts & Entertainment, Book Reviews, Borough of The Bronx, Ny, Bronxville, Health, History, Hobbies, People, Westchester County, NY 6 Comments

Gail Farrelly grew up in The Bronx and now resides in Bronxville, NY. Having a doctorate in accounting from George Washington University, she's taught in several universities and published numerous articles in business and academic journals. Learning about the murderous politics of academic life turned her mind to crime. The fictional kind, of course! Her first mystery, "Beaned In Boston," in which a lecherous professor perishes even though he was well published, was named to the Washington Irving Book Selection List. Her short story, "Even Steven," was nominated for a Derringer Award. Gail writes spoofs for the Yonkers Tribune Webaper, YonkersTribune.com, and for a British website, TheSpoof.com.  Gail shares a website, http://www.farrellysistersonline.com/, with her sister Rita, also a mystery writer.

Gail Farrelly grew up in The Bronx and now resides in Bronxville, NY. Having a doctorate in accounting from George Washington University, she’s taught in several universities and published numerous articles in business and academic journals. Learning about the murderous politics of academic life turned her mind to crime. The fictional kind, of course! Her first mystery, “Beaned In Boston,” in which a lecherous professor perishes even though he was well published, was named to the Washington Irving Book Selection List. Her short story, “Even Steven,” was nominated for a Derringer Award. Gail writes spoofs for the Yonkers Tribune Webaper, and for a British website, TheSpoof.com. Gail shares a website, http://www.farrellysistersonline.com/, with her sister Rita, also a mystery writer.

The song claims “Love is a many splendored thing.” Rubbish!

Okay, maybe it is “splendored” sometimes; but in my brief experience, well, not so much. It’s an on-again, off-again kind of thing.

My name is Kenny. I’m an Amazon Kindle, one of those little electronic book devices that can hold tons of books. My owner is a twenty-something, self-proclaimed lover of books. Her name is Roberta Reader. She sleeps in a shirt that reads “a book lover never goes to bed alone,” and she carries a tote bag imprinted with the words of Thomas Jefferson: “I cannot live without books.” The bookshelves in her apartment are overflowing.

My relationship with Roberta isn’t always a smooth one. In fact, it didn’t have a good beginning. I was given to her as a gift; at first, she wasn’t pleased. She muttered that technology could take over the rest of the world but she wasn’t going to allow it to take over HER world. She even threatened to take me back to the store where I was born. (Yes, this is the “she loves me not” part of the story!) For a while, I was not at all welcome in that household. Roberta’s so-called real books snickered behind my back, confident in their superiority.

Then a funny thing happened. Well, funny to me, anyway, though not to my owner. One night Roberta tripped over some classic books (the biggest bullies who had aligned themselves again me!), stacked near her couch in the living room. She broke her wrist and sprained her ankle and was home from work for ten days.

Roberta ran out of reading material on the third day. In a foul mood, she grabbed me out of my little packing case (which she had hidden in the back of her closet), pushed a few buttons, and screeched, “Show me what you can do.” She downloaded the latest book by her favorite mystery writer, adjusted the size of the type, and settled down for a nice long session. And so it went for the next few days. She downloaded several more books and read to her heart’s content. (This is the “she loves me” part of the story!)

Trouble arrived when Roberta’s friend came for a visit one afternoon, bearing a get-well gift — a copy of the book at the top of The New York Times current list of bestsellers. Roberta and her friend talked about how a hardcover book was the perfect gift and how nothing could replace the feel of paper and the sight of the printed page. This brought back, they claimed, so many memories of when they had first learned to read. Roberta had the nerve to pick me up and say scornfully that she had found me useful as a temporary stopgap when she couldn’t get to the library or a bookstore but that I wasn’t the same as a real, live book. Imagine the gall of that woman. Traitor! No concern for my feelings at all.

I got back at her on Valentine’s Day, the day that Roberta returned to work. She took me with her, since I weigh so little and am easy to read on the subway. I was still mad at her, so I didn’t provide top-notch service. On the way home, I took my time when she attempted to turn my pages and I blurred the print a little. Okay, okay, I admit it. I wasn’t being so nice. But then look what she said about me! Anyway, I wasn’t surprised (but a little disappointed) when, after dinner that night, she went to her bookshelf and selected a thick volume of the works of Dickens. But guess what? It turned out she didn’t select it for reading. Roberta took the huge volume and used it as a doorstop for her bedroom door. Eureka! She then scooped me up, settled herself in her rocker, and picked up where she had left off in the novel she was reading on the subway. I breathed a sigh of relief. Our spat was over, at least for now.

So, on the evening of Valentine’s Day, all was well with Roberta and me. Of course, it isn’t always that way. I live with the situation as best I can. I have even managed to make peace with the traditional books (those other guys) that line Roberta’s shelves. After the Valentine’s Day slight of the volume of Dickens, we realize that we’re all in the same boat — subject to the whim of a woman. After all, as Frederic Reynolds wrote in The Will:

“As for the women, though we scorn and flout ’em,
We may live with, but cannot live without ’em.”

THE END

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She Loves Me, She Loves Me Not: A Kindle’s Valentine Lament By GAIL FARRELLY was first published by Kings River Life Magazine in the February 11, 2012th issue.

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Gail Farrelly (Twitter: @gailfarrelly) writes mystery novels and short stories. She publishes satire at The Spoof ( http://is.gd/ZjsZuy). Her short stories are sold at Untreed Reads (http://is.gd/9uwEfO), on the Amazon Kindle, at iBooks, and at many other ebook vendors worldwide. She shares a website, www.farrellysistersonline.com, with her sister, Rita Farrelly, author of the local best seller, NOT IN BRONXVILLE: A SUBURBAN MYSTERY NOVEL. Gail is working on another mystery novel and also a book of spoofs.

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Hezi ArisShe Loves Me, She Loves Me Not: A Kindle’s Valentine Lament
By GAIL FARRELLY

Comments 6

    1. Gail Farrelly

      Dahli, two Mary Ellens, Roberta, and Lorna,

      Thx so much for reading and commenting. Hope you all had a good Valentine’s Day!

  1. Mary Ellen Lawler

    I remember how please I was to receive my Kindle. I did have trouble figuring it out and frequently called Amazon. Now I love it and keep it fully changed. I read it on my sofa after lunch (and nap also) and bring it with me when I appointments where I might have to wait. This is not the first story from Ms. Farrelly that I have read. I find them very witty.

  2. Mary Ellen Golden

    What a delightful way to begin Valentine’s Day with a story from Gail that is so timely.I am not yet convinced that using a Kindle is the way to go but it does give me food for thought.Happy Valentine’s Day!

  3. Dahli Gray

    Gail’s delightful story hit home with me. I initially was devoted to traditional paper books after I got my Kindle. A friend recently loaned me a paper book that is over 800 pages long. I read the first few chapters to see if I wanted to read the full book. Since the answer was yes, I purchased the Kindle version for the very reasons that Gail mentions in her story. I am a fan of Gail’s work. She never disappoints me as her work is excellent every time! Dahli

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