Our leaders and their shelves

We’re just never satisfied.

A few weeks ago Ed Miliband was interviewed and photographed in front of his bookcase, and all of a sudden everyone was analysing what was on his shelves. And what wasn’t. And how.

He had not put his books in alphabetical order. So? Just because you and I have OCD, doesn’t mean Ed does. There were gaps in between the books in places. I would hazard a guess that those books might be out being used. His book collection contained a variety of different types of books. Strange, that.

And just maybe Ed has more than the one bookcase visible in the photo?

At least he reads. No. I mean, at least he owns books, and it looks like he reads some of them.

Then, this week we had the Camerons and their shelves. Mrs Cameron and Mrs Obama posed in front of a bookcase filled with mainly DVDs, plus a bottom shelf laden with coffee table books.

Again, maybe they actually have more than the one set of shelves, just like the Milibands might do. If not, they aren’t exactly readers. But there is a shelf with what must be their personal choice of entertainment. It’s in the room where they entertained Michelle Obama. They could have done what so many do, and put their DVDs somewhere else.

I hope they read. But if they don’t, at least they went to IKEA for their shelves like the rest of us.

Almost as folksy as seeing that man with the white hair and black eyebrows behind me in the queue to security at Edinburgh airport last week. He didn’t look happy, but I’m glad even the Darlings of success have to submit to the stupid rules along with the rest of us.

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6 responses to “Our leaders and their shelves

  1. I have to admit that my books aren’t in alPhabetical order, either. They don’t need to be, because I know where everything is.

  2. Alphabetical order? What’s that? My books are shelved, vaguely, according to subject (fantasy, children’s, adult novels, philosophy, etc), sentiment (whether the authors knew one another or might have liked one other if they had), physical constraints (will the darned book actually fit in the shelf with the others?) and most-read (in which case it’s not on a shelf at all, but in a pile on the floor, on the staircase, on the sideboard, on my bedsite table, windowsill, and so on).

  3. Mostly my books aren’t even shelved. My front room is total chaos. When the piano tuner came week before last I had to heave some large piles off the instrument just to allow him access.

  4. If people looked at my shelves–and stacks–they would think, she has no concept of organizing at all. Or, come to that, dusting.

  5. Dusting? Please explain. I’ve not come across the concept before.
    I can organise. Just haven’t got anywhere to do it any longer. 24 years ago we moved here from a house half the size and thought we had all the space in the world…

  6. Katherine, I’m so happy to see someone else uses the sentiment basis of book shelving !

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