Wednesday, June 28, 2006

BOOKS: I'm Not High Right Now, I Swear

I can't remember how I stumbled across this photo group on Flickr, but it's so neat I thought I'd pass it along. Called the Bookshelf Project, it's a collection of photos of book collections that the 900 members of the group have uploaded.

(Congratulations! If you clicked on the link above before reading further, you have arrived. You are a true book nerd. Your membership card and secret decoder ring will be arriving in the mail in 4-6 weeks.)

One thing I noticed after scanning through a few pages of thumbnails: when you look at photos of books
en masse, it's not unlike flipping through a pornographic magazine really quickly. Your senses are flooded by a tidal wave of a single colour palette (though books tend to fall into the grey-blue area of the spectrum, while porn tends to be more on the, er, "peachy" side), and there's a strange rush coupled with a kind of Zen peace that comes from being inundated by an almost kaleidoscopic barrage of repeating images.

No, I'm not high right now. I swear.

Speaking of which, I haven't even begun to view all 1500+ pictures, but of the ones I've seen so far,
this (uploaded by a member called etara) is definitely my favourite:

Whoa, dude. I think somebody spiked the punch.

I don't know where this picture was taken, and there's no information on the page. When I tried to do a search, the keywords "big-ass spiral tower thingy of books" didn't yield results, strangely enough. If anyone could enlighten me before this drives me NUTS, I'd appreciate it.


PJay said...

I think someone had a mirror on their ceiling, laid another mirror on the floor, built a spiral tower of books, leaned in and took a picture. Or it's a Photoshop job.

I like puzzles!

Anonymous said...

It looks like something out of a Jasper Fforde novel... which, awesome.

Likalia said...

It was taken at the Prague Public Library - not that I have been there. If it still exists it is definitely on my list of places to see now, due to this photo. :)

Anonymous said...

Likalia - thanks for the info! I did a google image search on Prague public library and found all kinds of cool pictures. Now I want to go there too!

Alice said...

I've just joined the group - as if I need another reason to love my books!

And I spent the evening alphabetizing. Bliss!

landismom said...

That is totally cool.

Ali said...

When I saw books that I have (not the really common ones, but the older, kinda hard to find ones), and I saw them flash past on the slide show I thought to myself, "OH MY GOD! That's MY BOOK!" Like, the same way someone might say, "Oh my God, that's Brad Pitt!"

Anonymous said...

It's different-the pic I mean. :)

Maya said...

I love it. Waiting anxiously for decoder ring.

Actually, I have to say that I thought of you yesterday after a couple of margaritas...

It turned out that the crazy-haired guy at the table next to us was T.C. Boyle and I kept saying to my friend, "I know that guy....its... its...OHMYGAHHHD its TC Boyle!" in a fierce margie-whisper.

Then I remarked how sad I was that there was no one I could call and squeal to excitedly that I was at happy hour with a real writer - which is when I thought of you.

So... that's my story. Cheers!