My husband is a lucky man.
I can hear you all saying, “Yes indeed! He is a lucky bloke being married to you, Robin! That guy sure has it made!” (I love when I can work “bloke” into a sentence.)
Yup . . . my husband is a lucky guy, but being married to me isn’t what I am talking about here.
At three recent functions, he won a 36-inch flat-screen TV, a golf putter, and a Kindle Fire. I said, “You can have the TV and keep the putter, honey, but the Kindle is mine!”
I own the first generation Kindle. It was a gift from said lucky husband. Because I am a book snob, I was skeptical about the whole electronic book thing, but I love it. How handy to have dozens of books tucked in my purse. I look up words on a whim, highlight favorite passages, and sometimes let the book read to me. I love the image of a literary giant smiling up at me when I turn on my old Kindle. Maybe it is more like a sneer while they silently say, “Shouldn’t you be writing rather than reading Fifty Shades, Robin? Shame on you.”
So, back to my new Kindle Fire. It has advertisements! I kid you not, advertisements!
Day One of Kindle Fire ownership, I dusted off the cares of the day, put on my jammies, and snuggled with my new electronic device. It is not nearly as cozy as snuggling with my beloved, but a nice way to wind down from the day.
I fired up the new Kindle and what greeted me? An ad for AT&T’s 4G Network. Turn the damn thing off, turn it on again, and what do I see? A commercial for Streisand’s new movie The Guilt Trip.
I’m ok watching TV and having commercials. Less ok with anything but previews at the movie theater. But on my book? A commercial? No way, Jose.
Imagine cracking open your dog-eared copy of Romeo and Juliette and an ad for o-romeo-o-romeo.com is on the first page. Or, curling up with 50 Shades of Whatever and an ad for Viagra greets you at the door. Good grief. Product placement has taken over the literary world. Mr. Shakespeare would be appalled.
I understand Kindle sells these ads to keep the price of the device low. How thoughtful of them. Don’t they make all their money on book sales anyway, not on the Kindle itself? I guess you can pay Kindle $15 and opt out of the ads. Sounds like extortion to me. I’d rather spend the 15-smack-a-roos on more books, so I’ll put up with the ads.
For the record, I am not reading Fifty Shades of Grey and have no plans to. My mother won’t return my copy.