Being a Stealthy Observer

On a two-leg flight recently, I decided to make note of what other passengers near me were reading. On the first leg, my row mate was reading CATCHING FIRE, book two of The Hunger Games trilogy. Good choice! (I later cringed when she folded the page to mark her place.) The couple across the aisle weren’t reading anything. 


More readers were on the second flight: My row mate was reading LONE SURVIVOR, a military memoir. The man across the aisle was engrossed in STRATEGY FORMULATION AND IMPLEMENTATION, a book about business models. His female row mate was reading MOCKINGJAY, book three in the Hunger Games trilogy. Good choice!


Lastly, the man catty-cornered to me was reading a magazine article entitled, “Perils of Panflation.” (Me either. I looked it up just now: it refers to global up-sizing and super-sizing things like clothing and food.)


To summarize, we have:

Two Young Adult novels by the same author

One business book

One memoir

One magazine dealing with global economy


In my strictly unscientific analysis, the women apparently preferred losing themselves in a good novel. In this case, a dark, troubling—and extraordinary—make-believe world.  The men apparently preferred reading about true acts of heroism and bravery during war; viewpoints on the world economy; and developing and maintaining a successful business. (Details from a sometimes dark, troubling—and extraordinary—real world.)


What are the larger implications? No idea. But it was fun being a stealthy observer—a literary Harriet-the-Spy, if you will—surreptitiously gleaning titles and writing them down in my handy little notebook. Once my mission was accomplished, I settled in with my copy of Writer’s Digest.  


Hmm… I wonder what that says about me? 





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Comments: 2
  • #1

    Andreea H-J (aka Alice Lake) (Sunday, 29 April 2012 23:18)

    Hi Cindy,

    You have an awesome blog! Thanks for sharing. I have been on so many flights recently and am usually so exhausted, I crawl under my travel blanket and pass out for most of the flight. After reading this entry though, I will make an effort to see what books people are reading. What a great idea. I probably never thought of it as I'm trying not to get motion sick on the plane. :)

  • #2

    cindyangellkeeling (Monday, 30 April 2012)

    Thank you, Andreea! It is interesting to see such an array of book preferences. Happy travels! (And wonderful meeting you at Spring Fling 2012.)

    And for the distinction of being my first commenter (yea!), I'm awarding you last week's CD giveaway. Please use my contact page to send me your preferred mailing address.