As mentioned in my year in review post, I managed to reach my goal of 50 books for the year. Well, I'm off to a roaring start this year. I've already got four under my belt and we're only a week into 2013. I've still got a weeks vacation so with a little luck I can knock out a couple of more. I realize reading isn't meant to be a competitive event, but one book per week doesn't seem like too lofty a goal, especially since I have my no book longer than 500 pages rule that I follow.
I got a couple of books for Christmas that were a pleasant surprise. The How to Keep Your Volkswagen Alive by John Muir has been around since 1969 with a few updates along the way. I'm sure it's going to come in handy when I finally move beyond sheet metal repair and start actually turning some wrenches on mine. The Your Guide to National Parks should be a good one to feed my travel dreams. According to the cover, it's supposed to be "The Complete Guide to all 58 National Parks". That would be the number I should plan on traveling to if I wanted to make that my next quest after completing my all 50 States quest. Of course, I could incorporate the two. Hit a couple of National Parks while touring my last few states. Surprisingly enough, in all my travels over the years, I've only been to a handful of the parks - probably would have been to a lot more if they raced motorcycles in them.
My buddy Kevin dropped off a few books for me to read, The Genius in The Design being one of them. He too reads like a fiend. I don't know how he finds the time to read as much as he does but he out did me on the page count this year again. I had 13,642 pages to his 17,323. The Missus brought a few home from the library booksale for me as well. That would explain Joe Bob Briggs being in the house.
I also received a small booklet, There Are No Grades In The Real World, from Mr. Don Tocco. I heard of Mr. Tocco through a Hillsdale College publication that mentioned the booklet and the reading list it contained. After doing a little research on Mr. Tocco's background, I was more than a little interested in what he was recommending to college students to help them along the path to success. Jumping to the bottom line, he was kind enough to send me a few copies of his booklet that contains the reading list as well as an inspirational DVD prepared by him as well.
A couple of the books on the list I've already read - The Prophet, The Power of Positive Thinking, How to Win Friends and Influence People. Several of the books I've never heard of. A couple I've heard of but never pursued. Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill being one example. I've come across the name of Napoleon Hill a couple times over the years but never pursued looking into it. According to Wikipedia, by the time of his death in 1970, 20 million copies of his book had been sold. That being the case, it shouldn't be hard to locate at least one copy I can add to my 2013 book list.
Mr. Tocco's book list, as you probably surmised from the few titles I've listed, are all inspirational, motivational, or spiritual - come up with a plan, work your plan, optimize your talents, seek a higher power. However, the thing that I was most impressed with was not so much the list, but rather, that a man of Mr. Tocco's position was kind enough to respond to my e-mail on the same day and then send along the booklets in a later mailing. Here's a man heading a firm that has over $4 billion in sales since he started the company, taking the time to personally answer my query about his reading list, send me a few copies to share with my boxers and students and enclose a short, hand written note. I never realized millionaire CEO's actually did that. Impressive.
As we start the new year, might not be a bad idea for all of us to read a few of his recommended books. We could all use a little inspiration from time to time. Not a bad idea to just remind yourself to take the time to read a book, period. I'm planning on knocking out a couple more who-dunnits before my vacation's over and then tackle a few of a more serious nature. Even if you're not a reader yourself, take the kids or grand kids to the library and get a book in their hands. I was fortunate to grow up in a house chock full of readers. It can open up a whole new world to the young-uns. It did for me.
Have a good week.