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March 06, 2013

Books for the Daily Commuter

8387187808_5666d168b6_o   Commuters of the world unite! There are many of us who, for the sake of our wallets, are forced to ride the bus or subway A LOT. Whether you’re headed to work or out for a fun spell, quite a bit of time can be spent not only waiting for your transportation to arrive, but also bumping along en route to your location. And so it would seem that we commuters have a few choices in regards to what to do with our time: A. Get lost in a mindless game on the phone (Angry Birds anyone?), B. Stare mind numbingly at the overly familiar scenery, C. Enjoy some quality reading time. I don’t know about you, but I generally opt for C. Of course, there’s always appropriate commuter reading. You don’t want to start something that you will hate to put down once you reach your destination, yet you want to be sufficiently enthralled and entertained so that the whole transportation process seems less mundane and overwhelming. So for commuters everywhere, I present to you my list of Commuter Codices:
  1. Arthur Conan Doyle's short Sherlock Holmes stories: short enough for a shuttle trip, fascinating enough to make you forget that you’re squished up next to the guy with the smelly armpits.
  2. The Road by Cormac McCarthy: okay, I admit this will be a hard book to put down. However, as it’s not written like your typical novel (no margins or paragraph breaks), a common complaint amongst readers is that they don’t feel they reach a point where they can just stop reading. I think that the robotic voice announcing your stop on the subway should serve as a perfect indicator that you need to step away from the book.
  3. 7 Habits of a Highly Ineffective Person by Aaron Niz: perhaps a rather unconventional choice, but trust me, this book is good for a laugh and easy to pick up and put down again at your convenience. You may just find yourself being stared at by other bus passengers as you chuckle aloud while reading this one.
  4. The Complete Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe: an excellent assortment for your daily commute. You can choose between stories or poetry, depending on your mood, and if you find yourself getting too creeped out by Poe’s rhetoric, you’ll actually be glad that you’re surrounded by other people during rush hour.
We’d love to add to this list and hear your suggestions, so don’t be shy! What are some of your favorite things to read whenever you sally forth into the urban jungle? :)