Phoenix has entered the New Year by stepping up its public transportation game. January 1st, metro area Phoenicians got a light rail that takes us through some of the East Valley (including Arizona State University) and a good chunk of Phoenix. Now I don't have to commute an hour each way to work or pay the ridiculous parking fees ($10 a day! or $800 a year!) at my job. But the main reason I wanted to ride the light rail is because it gives me an hour of uninterrupted time to read.
It's hard to read with kids running through the house. It's hard for me to read before bed because I tend to fall asleep. Like immediately.
So reading at dawn on the train sounded good. Other folks take advantage of this, too, and last week I actually looked at the books that riders were reading. Three or four people were reading James Patterson. One rider was reading Stephen King. Another person had a book titled The Toyota Way that looked interesting for wonkish, corporate types.
As much as I love to see people engaged with a book, I have to admit that I was disappointed with such obvious mainstream choices. The NY Times recently reported that reading of fiction by adults has risen which is good news. And Barack Obama's choice of Elizabeth Alexander as the inaugural poet is an inspired choice that will hopefully turn people onto her amazing body of work. What are you reading that you'd like to recommend? What are folks reading on the trains and buses in your city?