Weekly Geeks 2009-17: Mark it down

For this week’s edition of Weekly Geeks, I’d like to focus on one of the most useful tools for a bibliophile: Bookmarks.
Do you use bookmarks or just grab whatever is handy to mark your page? Do you collect lots of different bookmarks or do you have a favorite one that you use exclusively? If you’re not someone who uses bookmarks on a regular basis, have you ever used anything odd to mark your place?
If you make your own bookmarks or have a bookmark collection, please feel free to share some pictures with the rest of us.

My relationship with bookmarks is ambivalent. I love to look at them. They often have great quotes on them and look beautiful. In fact to me they are a decorative item, and that’s it. I never use them. I have some, of course,  but I invariably lose them and can never find them again. The reason I buy them nowadays is to give them away with a book as a gift, because I like the idea to combine the two for other people.

These days I read mostly e-books and don’t have any use for bookmarks. When I read print books I use dog-ears as bookmarks. They do the trick and can’t get lost and my kids won’t snatch them away. The perfect solution for me. I can already hear people saying, “Oh, how can she mark books with dog-ears?”, “Books are sacred and can’t be desecrated with dog-ears.” Each to his own, but for me this is utter nonsense. It’s not a specific book that is sacred, but the abstract thought of books. What is sacred is what books stand for, what they can give us and what they mean to us. A physical book is just some paper, often not even very good quality, and gets treated like every other item in my household – with not much respect. It’s just a thing.

So, no bookmarks for me, but if I used them, I’d probably get them at Bookwormz on Etsy.

Photo of “Bookmarks” from secretlondon123 at flick’r

11 Comments Write a comment

  1. I don’t tend to dog ear, but I know people who do, or who only read in bed and leave the book open, face down, trashing the spine. I read quite quickly so I don’t tend to be hard on spines, but covers suffer because any book I have will end up in my handbag at some point, fighting for space. I agree that books have to fit in with your lifestyle, there is no point being precious about them if you have kids and animals.

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  2. I always roll my eyes at people who freak out over dog eared books. Dog earing is my desperate choice when I cannot find a book mark.
    I love your line of thinking as it pertains to what about a book is sacred. To me, a book is sacred if it invokes some type of intense emotion or thought.

    sari’s latest blog post..Some news and a quick review on a not so good read

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  3. I *do* use bookmarks (it can take ages to finish a book sometimes 😉 and do not dog ear, but I have no problem with it. Books are *not* sacred! I used to have many many books of my parents and even grandparents that I was never gonna read but kept anyway — because you’re not supposed to get rid of books :\ Good thing I discovered Flylady someday LOL She taught me only to keep things that I love. Once I gave away all the books that weren’t really mine (or that I hadn’t liked), all the attention went to the books that I *did* find worth wile! And I guess dog earing pages that you find special (like I know people do) is something alike :))

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  4. I never dog ear but have no problem with others who do. Just don’t be dog earing my books! Lol. I like our books to stay nice and clean and do try to keep them in relatively good condition. However, I don’t freak if they get creased or worn. A lot of books I get are already that way as I usually buy used. I’m just a very careful handler, of anything, not just books. It’s the way I am. But I agree with you that it’s what they stand for and what they give to us, that makes books precious. Sometimes I just can’t help separating the substance of a book from its physical body, though.

    claire’s latest blog post..Bookmarks

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  5. I’ve been known to collect bookmarks because I sometimes have the urge to collect stuff and bookmarks don’t take up much space. I like the thought of giving them as gifts with books! There are so many pretty bookmarks.

    I’m like you in that I’m moving to ebooks and don’t have a need for bookmarks. It’s so convenient to have the ebook reader just put me back where I left off in the book with one touch of a button.

    As far as paperbacks go, the weirdest thing I’ve been known to mark a book with is a square of toilet paper. Not because I actually read while in the bathroom, but more because I usually have a rolls of toilet paper stashed all over the house in case I have a sneezing fit due to year-round allergies. Toilet paper is less expensive than boxes of facial tissue.

    I don’t think I could dog-ear a page. Unless it was a library book, oddly enough. But I guess we all know how disgusting library books can get!

    Val Kovalin’s latest blog post..Saturday Reviewer – Book Utopia Mom

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  6. I don’t mind books dog-eared. I’d rather have a bookmark though. I love books and like most things with a little wear just means it’s loved. Like a favorite pair of old jeans. 🙂

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  7. hagelrat: Yes, with kids I’ve given up on the thought of precious stuff. I’m pretty rough with spines, too.

    Sari, you are so right about what makes a book precious.

    Gnow: Flylady is good, isn’t she. But I hardly ever throw away books. I mostly keep them, no matter what.

    Claire: Being a careful handler is good. I’m the opposite, though. Even with stuff I really, really love, I’m just negligent.

    Val, toilet paper? That’s good. But why not, it’s as good as anything.

    Thanks everybody for stopping by.

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