Bibliophilia, sounds kind of dirty, doesn’t it? Well that’s how I felt, in a good way, after a pleasurable visit to Myopic Books in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood yesterday. I was in the area for a meeting and had some time to kill so I started exploring the neighborhood. I love books and bookstores, so I was really happy to find Myopic Books even if I only had a few minutes to browse.

When I walked in, I was immediately reminded of O’Gara’s Books in Hyde Park, but much bigger. Shelves and shelves of books in wooden bookshelves stacked to the ceiling. Just books everywhere. I was surrounded and infused by the wonderful smells of books! I love eBooks, but nothing can replace the aroma of the printed page.

Experiencing such an emotional response, no doubt heightened by the loss of so many of my beloved Borders bookstores, it occurred to me that perhaps my love of books had become a fetish. There are fetishes for pretty much everything, so this is probably not unique. I just hadn’t noticed it before, taking bookstores for granted. Never thinking that someday they’d begin to disappear.

I was so happy that I just had to buy something! I found a copy of Masters of Doom that I knew would be perfect for my son the hacker genius. And I’ll probably get an eBook copy for myself, which interestingly enough cost about the same as the used hardcover. I’ll definitely have to visit Myopic Books again sometime!