Monday, August 14, 2006

Somewhere over the Reading Rainbow

Since Donna and I are traveling through the mid-west performing at Fringe Festivals,
I thought that this story was appropriate.

One of the stereotypes that we children of television face is that we don’t read. Not true. I read books, and not just the ones that Oprah tells me to. I like to read biographies and humor especially. When it comes to fiction I like to get book’s on tape and listen to them when I go on a long drive or on a flight. Listening to these adventures read by talented actors really makes the time go by quickly.

One day I was planing for a long flight and I decided to get a couple of the Star Trek novels on tape. When I was at the counter of the book store, who do I see but none other than Star Trek: The Next Generation's very own Lieutenant Commander Geordi La Forge, LeVar Burton. One of the tapes I was buying was narrated by Mr. Burton. Should I go over to him and have him sign the tape’s box? I don’t want him to think that I was one of those Trekker geeks. Oh, what the hell I thought, go over there. I then notice that Mr. Burton is buying several thick Tom Clancy/John Grisham type books. Then I remember, he’s also Mr. Reading Rainbow. He has dedicated more than two decades on his PBS series to teaching kids the importance of reading. If he sees me with these books on tape, he’s not going to think that I’m one of those Trekker geeks, worse, he’s going to think that I’m illiterate, stupid or just to damn lazy to read a book. Please God, don’t let LeVar Burton see me buying these books on tape. When the sales lady asked if I wanted a bag for my tapes, I said, please, yes. And I sneaked out of the store with my books on tape wrapped in brown paper. You would have thought I was hiding porn.

To quote Levar Burton on Reading Rainbow, "But you don't have to take my word for it".

Speaking of reading, Tony & Donna both have a story in:

Guess Who's Coming to...

627 Massachusetts Avenue
Indianapolis, IN 46204-1606
Fri, Aug 25 - 9:00 pm
Sun, Aug 27 - 2:30 pm
Tues, Aug 29 - 8:00 pm
Sat, Aug 02 - 1:00 pm
Sun, Aug 03 - 8:30 pm
Tickets available at
$11.00 advance via PayPal
$10.00 at the door

Stay Tuned

Tony Figueroa

1 comment:

Linda said...

I have heard this myth about we "children of television" not being readers and always wanted to laugh. If anything, I have bought MORE books due to watching television. MY WORLD AND WELCOME TO IT turned me on to Thurber, PLEASE DON'T EAT THE DAISIES to Jean Kerr, older talk/game shows to Erma Bombeck and Sam Levenson, ELEANOR AND FRANKLIN to bios of the Roosevelts (both sides), AMERICAN EXPERIENCE to myriad things like David McCullough's books to SUDDEN SEA and A WIND TO SHAKE THE WORLD (hurricane of '38). Even now if I see a particularly interesting documentary that has a book associated with it, I will hunt up the book. TV opened my eyes to many literary and historical volumes. If it wasn't for television I would have never read the Lord Peter Wimsey books, Agatha Christie, "The Most Dangerous Game," Uris' QBVII...if I go on, I'll fill up your blog. :-)