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All day today at random times I kept thinking, “Cleveland is very beautiful today.”  Except it really sounded more like, “Cah-leeeve-lund ees varrry beee-a-uuu-tee-ful…. TO-day!”  You see, once upon a time I was part of a team of Catholic young adults who traveled around the country putting on retreats for Catholic youth (aka Challenging young Catholics to love Christ and embrace the life of the Church).  One of the most cherished parts of our retreats was when we would put on extremely silly skits.  One that I loved deeply, the one that became my skit, was a monologue called The Shark and The Pineapple.  It was a deeply moving saga of love, loss, and the futility of life.  Oh, and Cleveland.  See for yourself:

Now the reason I keep thinking of that is not because I’m getting set to relive my glory days of poetic expression (though I humbly submit that I killed at Shark and Pineapple), but because tomorrow Mariah and I are taking a road trip to Cleveland.  You see, now both of have Kindles, and the thing about having Kindles is that it becomes insanely easy to buy books.  There’s all those promotional e-mails, and hey, it’s only $.99 or $1.99 or $2.99, and oh, wait, was that the first book in a series, and now there are five more books you’re itching to read for only $7.99 apiece?  And before you know it, you’ve got hundreds of books loaded on your device, and half your paycheck is flowing directly into Amazon’s coffers without even passing Go.

However, the glorious thing about having a Kindle (besides being able to carry an entire library around with you without breaking your back), is that you can also borrow books from the library on them, books that automatically expire whenever they’re due instead instead of accruing late fees.  You don’t even have to go down to the physical library to check them out, you can just do it all on your own little computer.  It’s really awesome.

The only problem is that our local library’s selection of e-books is just a bit limited.  However, we heard whispers through the Kindle-owners underground (no, seriously, that’s a thing) that Cleveland public library has a particularly fine collection on offer.  We checked it out, and lo, it was true.  And anyone who’s a member of their library can check them out.  Except in order to get a card, you have to physically present yourself at one of their branches.  So somehow the mad idea of just, you know, driving up to Cleveland and joining their library presented itself.  I didn’t take it all that seriously, but Mariah kept thinking about it, and it’s only a little over three hours away, so that’s totally doable as a day trip, and then suddenly it was on our calendar and we were discussing where to stop to eat on the way back.

So tomorrow, Mariah and I are packing ourselves into Mariah’s car, armed with two forms of legal ID and proof of address (you never know what they might want), and road tripping to Cleveland to join the Cleveland Public Library.  Oh, and stopping off at a Brazilian steakhouse in Columbus on the way home to eat a lot of meat.  Because that’s just how we roll.

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