The Poop on . . . “Jonathan Livingston Seagull”

To those of you who might have been wondering where I’ve been for the past few years — I’ve been following other pursuits for a while. (One thing I’ve been doing is — after a lifetime of ardent listening — to finally learn to play the guitar. The verdict is . . . Eric Clapton can rest easy. No competition here. Yet, despite my thunderous lack of musical talent and any hint of natural aptitude I’m having fun playing loudly and badly and torturing the neighborhood cat, so I’m happy with my progress on that front.) My plan is to get the “The Books That Mattered” train stoked up and running again soon. In the meantime, here’s a little post I wrote a few years back to tide us over until I get my next new blog posts together.

The Books That Mattered

In preparation for my next Books That Mattered post, I’m currently hip-deep into Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead (1943). That doorstop of a novel weighs in at a daunting 727 pages. The edition I’m reading is so hefty I’ve been using it in lieu of my usual dumbbells to do biceps curls (hey, New Year’s is coming and we’ve got to get toned somehow).

So, as I was wading through Rand’s turgid tome, I decided to take a short break and go in the exact opposite direction. Write a quick post about something else. What was the shortest, most lightweight, least challenging book I could think of? Hmmm, let me think . . . of course . . . Richard Bach’s Jonathan Livingstone Seagull (1970).


My original 1970 edition of Seagull is all of 94 pages, at least half of which are black and white photographs, mostly of seagulls. (Russell Munson did the photography.) One realizes after the twenty-fifth…

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