I like to think I’m someone who would rather read Oscar Wilde or Mark Train while waiting in line at Starbucks than mindlessly scrolling my Instagram feed. If given the choice between two pockets, which will I choose? My left back pocket contains a time-tested, classic work of literature. My right front pocket contains a Google Pixel where I can encounter new likes, notifications, follows, and a portal to the world.
I so badly want to think I’m someone who reaches for The Happy Prince or The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass rather than my phone. And that’s why I pulled out the debit card when I came across Mouse Books Kickstarter. I contributed $50 so that means I’ll get these little classics in the mail throughout the next year. I loved Mouse Books advertising campaign because they gave me an identity. I want to be someone who reads Mouse Books.
— Ryan Smith (@RyanRRISD) February 7, 2018
The folks behind Mouse Books created a vision of a version of myself I yearn to be. They tapped in. I’ve been carrying my book for a few weeks and wish I could say I’ve pulled it out more than my phone when idling about, but we are all a work in progress. Baby steps, I’ve read them. To inspire change, it is so important to give your people an ideal to live up to. Give them a beacon on a hill, a hero with whom to identify, and a better future.
Of course, my end goal is to be someone who connects with other people during idle times waiting in lines or for the train to arrive. I’m working on being better at going first and I’m working on taking the initiative to make those connections.
And as I’m working on “going first” I can report that I don’t get hypnotized into a Mouse Book the same way I get sucked into my phone. Other humans are more likely to initiate a conversation with me if I am reading something on paper than if I’m interacting with my device. Finally, they just make me feel good. The Mouse Book is the underdog in the war for our attention. But, it deserves our respect. Give it a shot