I may be a hypocrite. In the short time that I’ve been keeping this blog, I have contradicted, or flip/flopped or undermined myself in almost everything I had originally stated! First I railed against the iPod, and then complained about getting screwned (see What I leaned… (5)) which is all but alleviated by the iPod. Next, I write a big post about not being able to leave a book unfinished, and less than a week later I leave one unfinished. Then I have a huge rant against memoirs, and, lo and behold, two of my last three books are memoirs. However, what I learned is that memoirs are a very different beast from novels. And I found while reading these two is that you really don’t have to pay attention when reading a memoir. When I was reading Sacred Games I had dozens of characters to try and keep straight, any of whom could pop up and do or say something meaningful at any time. When reading the Steve Martin memoir, the only character I had to keep in mind was Steve (since almost every time he would say My Mother or My Father or My Sister for the other important characters. In Daniel Tammet’s book he consistently explains who each person in his life is. So, I guess what it comes down to is that memoirs are much easier to read, and by extension, easier to pick up and put down. And in that respect, I really don’t like them. I enjoyed Martin’s because his career was funny and had an impact on my childhood, but in general, you won’t see too many more popping up here.
What’s interesting to me is that all of these changes of mind or opinion are a sign of growth for me. I said something, and then tried something else. Whether I liked the new way or not, there’s nothing wrong with admitting you were right or wrong. It’s funny how politicians are so fearful of changing their minds and being seen as flip-floppers. Whoever started that particular insult has pretty much condemned us to a group of leaders who can never change their minds. What a terrible display of leadership that is. How can you ever trust anyone who shows no sign of growth? So, hypocrite or open minded, you be the judge.