Blind Reading

By the very nature of being a handler, my life is intimately intertwined with that of my guide dog. And so, by extension, is my blog. But clearly based on the variety of tags and such in the sidebar, I have many other interests. In fact, I often think of something randomly to post while doing something completely unrelated — most times even to the thing I think of to post. As such, I’ve amassed a great deal of draft posts with notes to write a post about such-and-such when I have the time. Though, more accurately that could be described as inclination because while the idea might be an interesting thing to blog and I may have had tons of things to say when it popped into my head, letting it sit for even a few hours seems to rob me of the desire to write it out. But I’m working on that and trying to whittle these draft posts down — or at least determine what my random notes to myself mean so I can write the post someday!

So, what’s all that have to do with reading? Well, the lesser reason is that much like I am wishing to whittle down these draft posts of mine, I’ve also been diligently working at decreasing the mass of books that I’ve been meaning to read. I started the year with 154 books in my queue. I was very appalled at this staggering number because I’ve always been a voracious reader and yet this pile had just grown and grown. In fact, much of the reason it grew was because I was so intimidated by the size that for a long time I avoided even attempting to read any of those books because I felt it was such an impossible task. And then, earlier this year I decided that was just stupid and there were far too many good books amongst those many tomes that I just had to start working at reading them and getting that pile down. Since joining Goodreads I’ve been more able to be organized about this endeavor and it seems that while I’ve read, as of today, 74 books this year I still have 105 books in that pile. This is mostly because of my obsession with acquiring books and I don’t regret it at all. But I have realized, much like getting all these draft posts actually written, that this will be a long, possibly never-ending task.

However, the more accurate reasoning for this post came about because of two things. One is that while I have wanted to blog more about my visual impairment I tend to forget to really sit down and do just that and even when I have something related to the subject I somehow gloss over it without even realizing. I think this is mostly because I don’t sit around and think of myself as solely a blind person, anymore than I think of myself solely as a guide dog handler or a writer or half-Asian. All these things just are facets of me as a person and so I tend to be rather unconscious of anything specific unless it is there as a true focus of what I’m currently thinking. The second reason came about at work yesterday when I was reminded of another incident from a few months back.

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Amazon Kindle

Amazon now has a portable wireless reading device that has readability like a printed page. Apparently, there is already a rather extensive library of books, newspapers, blogs and more that you can purchase and read. I like that it doesn’t rely on WiFi. Judging from the images, it doesn’t appear to enlarge fonts all that much, which is surprising to me given its $400 price tag! Maybe a future version will come with more accessibility for the blind and/or low-vision?

EDIT: The Kindle has dropped down to $359 and Amazon is currently taking another $100 off if you apply for their credit card.

EDIT #2: Surpass Hosting is having a haiku writing contest for a Kindle! Contest is now over.