Sunday, September 06, 2009

The Rajah of Reading

Of all the gangs that I've ever run with, it's only with my friends in Davao that are connected by a passionate love of books. Formed by Aicha the Davao Readers Circle has been meeting more or less regularly every two weeks since last year (barring a long summer hiatus).

And guess what? I'm the only guy.

It's funny because you wouldn't normally expect to find a reading culture in Davao. Manila, maybe, what with it's many bookstores, but though my friends there were geeks, I can't recall actively trading books with any of them. (Well, only one, and the friend is also a she.)

With the DRC, it's different. I can honestly say that my reading tastes have improved since meeting these gals. It was through the DRC I discovered Dai Jie, Haruki Murakami, Franz Kafka, David Sedaris, and Yann Martel. It was also in the DRC that I foisted Alfred Bester, Alan Moore, and Jasper Fforde. Always a lively exchange.

Sometimes I wonder if there really are very few guys in Davao who actually read (the closest is Gilbert, but he's in GenSan.) Or maybe they're just too shy. Oh, well, their loss is my gain. Not too many men can boast of a regular harem, especially one composed of smart women.

And that, my friends, is why I'm the Rajah of Reading.