Impromptu Pleasures

Tuesday, June 8th, 2010 at 10:40 am

Several weeks ago, a general announcement of an upcoming book club showed up on my Facebook news feed. I read through the announcement, and while I was not a particular invitee, the book looked interesting and the announcement stated that anyone was welcome–so I clicked the “maybe attending” button.

I nearly forgot all about it in the intervening weeks, what with preparing for Tim’s graduation and Debbie’s bachelorette party, and working on my thesis and the like.

But on Sunday night, the book club made its way onto my “coming events” sidebar and I realized I had to make a decision. I read through the announcement again and decided that yes, I really did want to attend this book club.

Problem was, it was much too late to try to purchase the book online.

So I searched around all of Lincoln’s stores, trying to find the book. The next morning, I searched again. No luck. None of Lincoln’s booksellers had a copy of Gregory Boyd’s The Myth of a Christian Nation.

When I searched at Barnes and Noble, however, I discovered that there was a copy at one of the Omaha stores.

And thus began my wild hare.

“Rebekah Menter is contemplating driving to Omaha today to pick up a book. Am I crazy?” my Facebook status read.

A friend directed me to a discussion of Evangelical politics featuring three panelists, including Greg Boyd.

I watched a few clips of the event and decided that I was DEFINITELY interested in reading this book.

My next Facebook status? “Rebekah Menter is taking a spur-of-the-moment trip to Omaha. (What I will do for a book…)”

My trip was uneventful, quiet, nice. I got the book and returned home.

What turned this into an impromptu pleasure was that, having spent an extra couple of hours of my day tracking down the book, I HAD to go to the book discussion.

And so I did.

I didn’t know anyone who was going to be there (at least I didn’t think I knew anyone)–so I wasn’t really sure how I was going to find the group in the midst of one of Lincoln’s busiest coffee shops. Thankfully, someone had the book out, so I was able to introduce myself.

“I don’t know anyone here,” I said, “but I’m here for the book club.”

At which the fellow facing away from me looked up and gave a “What are you talking about?” expression.

I guess I was wrong. I did know someone.

“Sorry, Jake. I didn’t realize you were here.”

It turned out to be a wonderful night. I enjoyed meeting new people, getting bit of an intro to the book. But most of all, I enjoyed the passionate discussion that I found myself embroiled in after the “formal” book club portion ended.

It’s been so long since I had a real, honest-to-goodness, face-to-face passionate discussion about the issues of our day. It was refreshing, energizing, invigorating (let’s see how many more synonyms I can come up with :-P).

Needless to say, I enjoyed it thoroughly.

I’m so glad I made that impromptu decision to lock myself into going.

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Reader Comments (3):

  1. Davene says:

    I don’t know why, but I’m sort of surprised that you hadn’t read that book yet. Maybe that’s because you’ve read more books than anyone else I’ve ever met. :)

    I came across that book shortly after we moved back here from Israel, and I was reeling from the American “Churchianity” that seemed to be present in all the churches. Where was real Christianity? Why were all these Americans so blinded to what God was doing in the larger world? Anyway, that book came at a good time, and I loved it.

    I’d be interested to read any of your thoughts on it!

  2. That’s awesome. I think it’s cool that you would drive far away for a book. =) Brownie points to you, from me. With love, of course! (Looking forward to hearing further discussion on this book!)

  3. Casandra says:

    Yay for spontaneous trips! =) I wasn’t going to comment on this, since we have already discussed how amazing I think it was. But Carrie’s comment made me laugh. “I think it’s cool that you would drive far away for a book”. It makes me sound like you went to the ends of the earth of something, instead of a 45 minute drive. Anywhere else I’ve lived that doesn’t not qualify as “far away”. (= It made me chuckle.

    I’m so glad you went to the group! (just like Pollyanna!) It sounds really great, and I think I’ll have to read that book!

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