New book discloses objects of import


There's a new book out that may make you feel better about your fierce attachment to that Petoskey stone, cocktail napkin, or bottle cap stowed away somewhere. It's called "Taking Things Seriously: 75 Objects with Unexpected Significance," brought to you by Joshua Glenn and Carol Hayes. The team has a fan in the LA Times, who breaks it down thusly:

They asked artists, designers, writers and thinkers to contribute photos of their precious belongings and explain their significance. The result is a wonderfully eccentric collection of "things" and thought-provoking essays that underscore French philosopher Bruno Latour's challenge to regard objects as more than merely matters of fact but, Glenn writes in his introduction, as "an association, a network, a gathering" of meaning and ideas.

Some of the items people in the book hold dear:

  • A pile of red dirt
  • Ceramic pegs from an electric fence at Birkenau
  • A bagel prepared by Christopher Walken

During my entire third grade year, I collected confetti in lunch bags, but I never found a celebration worthy of expending it & eventually let them be thrown away in some domestic deep cleaning session. I'm not sure I even have one precious, unremarkable object to my name. Not an impressive or important or exceedingly maudlin one, anyway...So I'm going to raid my closet until I do & I can feel complete. So this is where I implore you to share your own...