Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Read As Much As You Can

My apologies to Emma, but I have to steal a blog topic and give it my own spin.

As an only child, I grew up with books as some of my closest friends. My mom is a voracious reader, and encouraged me to be as well as soon as I could figure out what those printed letters stood for on paper.

Trips to the mall always included a stop by any store that sold books. Garage sales were even better because we could leave with bagfuls of old Nancy Drew or Trixie Belden mysteries.

Around the time I was in third grade, my mom bought a book while we were doing some shopping at Midtown Mall. I didn't take much notice of it until we got in the car. After I buckled up, she handed me a bag saying, "This is for you." I pulled the book out and studied the cover with curiosity. It featured an illustrated baby hanging out of the "O" at the bottom of the title, which said, Where Did I Come From? - The Facts of Life Without Any Nonsense and With Illustrations.

I tried not to gape at the pictures of the naked man and woman, including the scene where they were shown making love. Yes, the book used this phrase. I poured over every page. "So THAT'S how it happens!" I thought to myself. A couple years later, we all got the less exciting explanation about reproduction in six grade science class.

I was glad my parents gave me that book. I think we've used books a lot to handle uncomfortable topics between the three of us. Sometimes it works. In this case, it was successful and I still have the book. A friend of mine used it in a skit for a drama class in high school. Something sticks in my mind that she got in trouble for it. Maybe she'll leave something in comments for all of us.

As a post-script, I should note that the illustrious author of that book, Peter Mayle, also wrote a series on life in Provence that I discovered a few years ago and thoroughly enjoyed. Just funny.
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The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network is the nation's largest anti-sexual assault organization. RAINN operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline with a nationwide partnership of more than 1,100 local rape treatment hotlines, providing victims of sexual assault with free, confidential services around the clock. The hotline helped 137,039 sexual assault victims in 2005 and has helped more than one million since it began in 1994. RAINN’s goal is to expand its hotline services with the National Sexual Assault Online Hotline, which will be the nation's first secure web-based hotline that provides live, secure and completely confidential help to victims 24/7 through an interface as intuitive as instant messaging. RAINN educates more than 120 million Americans each year about sexual assault. RAINN also publicizes the hotline's free, confidential services; educates the public about sexual assault; and leads national efforts to improve services to victims and ensure that rapists are brought to justice. RAINN is the nation's largest anti-sexual assault organization and has been ranked as one of America’s 100 Best Charities by Worth Magazine.

About Sexography:
By turns serious and playful, Sexography maps the coming of age, tragedy and rebirth of one woman's sexual self. From "making out" with imaginary Hollywood stars in her closet (and getting busted) to coming to terms with abuse, assault and rape, from embracing her curiosity enough to become a sex toy tester to accepting and dealing with her tumultuous past, Carly Milne paints a brutally honest - and, at times, amusing - picture of what it's like to learn about and experience sex in every sense of the word. From the earliest experiences in her childhood homes in Edmonton and Calgary, Alberta to present day Los Angeles, Milne guides readers through the sometimes troubled waters of female sexuality with a mixture of candidness and humor. Whether you've been through similar experiences or just know someone who has, Sexography will change your mind about why and how survivors survive.


3carnations said...

Lucky you. My mom gave me "the book" when I was 14. A little late methinks.

Emma said...

No apology necessary! I'm glad you decided to join in. Aren't books great? Especially the ones with illustrations. ;)

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