This man is James Patterson. He looks completely harmless, and he probably is to most people. But lately, since starting my job at the library, I have become wary of finding his books on my shelving cart. Why?
Let me begin with Diamond Dallas Page. Yes, the wrestler. A few weeks back my husband and I decided we didn’t like feeling old. We should still be able to get up from a chair without grunting or put on our shoes without making a big deal about picking up our legs to tie the laces (we simply can’t be bothered anymore with bending at the waist). So we learned about DDP’s yoga program and agreed to try it. I mean, DDP himself is pushing sixty years old. How hard could it be?
Well, it’s hard. Especially for two out-of-shape thirtysomethings with no sense of balance. We fought through the introduction class (via DVD) a few weeks back. It exhausted us. We were probably in bed by 9:30 every night that week.
Stretchy muscles and flexibility are not regular things Matt and I find ourselves living with. I almost typed “…are not regular things Matt and I enjoy“, but “enjoy” is not the right word at all. The truth is I would enjoy nothing more than stretchy muscles and flexibility these days. I believe Matt feels the same. On Saturday, he took Elle and her friend to a trampoline park and masterfully managed to hurt himself after doing a somersault into a foam pit. He, of course, didn’t feel it until it was too late to tell himself, “Hey, self. Slow down!”
It’s Wednesday and he’s still a little sore.
My job is very physical – unloading bins, arranging meeting room tables and chairs, pushing carts, and digging around shelves to find books that have fallen through the backs. I’m up and down all day. I stretch, I bend, I crawl. While learning the geography of the library, I have discovered James Patterson’s books are all situated on the top shelves in fiction. I am barely 5’3″. James Patterson’s books are very popular. So, naturally, I HATE the top shelves.
Other popular authors, however?
- Stephen King – he’s got a few middle rows to himself.
- Judy Devereaux – bottom shelf.
- 50 Cent – his books are at eye-level and are really of little importance here. I just want to know if you had a reaction to learning that 50 Cent is a published author. Of at least three books! I’m curious enough to consider checking out a few.
But James Patterson? Top frickin’ shelf. And it’s killing my back. Yes, I use the little step stool things. I still have a hard time seeing labels clearly on the top shelf. I still have to reach and stretch and contort my body with muscles I didn’t even know I had. It’s a good thing Diamond Dallas Page is around to help me out, right?
When Matt and I began this yoga challenge, I nominated myself to be the Yoga Police (I thought I would be the more disciplined of the two). Every night I come home from dealing with James Patterson, and I am reminded that Diamond Dallas Page is available to help me. DDP promised to change the way I feel. DDP promised to change my life! But the motivation just isn’t there anymore.
Because James Patterson took it.
And he just sits there in the fiction aisles of my library, looking all smug with his arms crossed (just like in the photograph above), blocking my path and daring me to shelve his books without causing myself further injuries. The back aches, the shoulder pain, the many nights I’ve skipped doing yoga.
And it’s all James Patterson’s fault.
(If I wanted to be a jerk about it, I’d also blame him for my sniffles and watery eyes, but it turns out another symptom of getting old is becoming allergic to all kinds of things – which is also a common symptom of simply being around books.)