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Book lovers could argue about the merits of physical books versus e-readers for eternity, but one man shocked fellow bookworms when he revealed he cuts books in half to make them more “portable.”
Avid readers were appalled at the news and immediately begun mocking him for his unorthodox methods.
Alex Christofi, senior editor at Oneworld Publications and self-proclaimed “book murderer,” tweeted, “Yesterday my colleague called me a ‘book murderer’ because I cut long books in half to make them more portable. Does anyone else do this? Is it just me?”
Yesterday my colleague called me a 'book murderer' because I cut long books in half to make them more portable. Does anyone else do this? Is it just me? pic.twitter.com/VQUUdJMpwT— Alex Christofi (@alex_christofi) January 21, 2020
The replies were merciless. “My dude, invest in a nice e-reader. This is precisely what they’re for. Then you won’t have to go through life as HISTORY’S WORST MONSTER,” Twitter user @scalzi wrote in response.
My dude, invest in a nice e-reader. This is precisely what they're for. Then you won't have to go through life as HISTORY'S WORST MONSTER. https://t.co/31e0dTuPfk— John Scalzi (@scalzi) January 21, 2020
i am choosing to get irrationally mad about this today https://t.co/wqUch22C2i— Brandy Jensen (@BrandyLJensen) January 21, 2020
It's just you. https://t.co/1oDjv0QqTE— Drew Magary (@drewmagary) January 21, 2020
Nobody does this. You are a serial killer. I am reporting you to the global police because we haven’t abolished prisons yet and it’s maybe still okay in very limited cases, such as yours because you are a serial killer. https://t.co/b19m57wQhR— Tressie McMillan Cottom (@tressiemcphd) January 21, 2020
my hot take is that this is insane but also fine https://t.co/drMn69rNoJ— julia reinstein 🚡 (@juliareinstein) January 21, 2020
Even Dictionary.com got involved, calling it both a “travesty” and “tragedy” and then proceeded to define both terms.
People often confuse the words "travesty" and "tragedy."— Dictionary.com (@Dictionarycom) January 21, 2020
A travesty is a grotesque or debased likeness or imitation.
A tragedy is a lamentable, dreadful, or fatal event or affair.
E.g. One might call a half book a travesty and a tragedy.https://t.co/MrckEl8MnX https://t.co/tKSqWXaSIH
Others just made fun of the idea, without taking a side. “I cut the book horizontally so first I read the top of all the pages then read the bottom,” Twitter user @KarlreMarks joked.
I do that as well, but I cut the book horizontally so first I read the top of all the pages then read the bottom https://t.co/WIspr83rpC— Karl Sharro (@KarlreMarks) January 21, 2020
If you want someone to gift you an ebook reader, there are better ways to do it. https://t.co/UPwT9bTeoi— Kevin Sebastian (@NoxVoyager) January 21, 2020
im one of those ppl who believes you should just be able to write in and draw on and do whatever you want with your books but this is DEEPLY hysterically funny to me. this is just a crazy thing to do. like just get a kindle. https://t.co/0G0M9qXJZE— Richie Tozier's PR manager (@rorschachisgay) January 21, 2020
Another quipped that they “do the same with really long DVDs.”
But some applauded Christofi’s innovation. His method for reading on the go was dubbed “practical,” and one Twitter user reminded everyone “they’re just books.”
Pros: Definitely practical— Jessica Bateman (@jessicabateman) January 21, 2020
Cons: Looks like you're carrying around the central clue from a film noir about a troubled detective on the trail of a serial killer https://t.co/twvbwKmJ1T
Destroying books is fine and OK if there's an even slightly decent reason. They're just books. https://t.co/5OC4aFmcF0— Luke Bailey (@imbadatlife) January 21, 2020
Some avid readers noted cutting books in half could be a game-changer. “This seemed like a bad idea until I looked at my bedside table where the Book of Dust has been sitting unread for 2 months because it’s too big to take to work and I don’t want to have to read a different book on the train,” Twitter user @callapilla wrote.
This seemed like a bad idea until I looked at my bedside table where the Book of Dust has been sitting unread for 2 months because it’s too big to take to work and I don’t want to have to read a different book on the train. https://t.co/LBwP7SpRRd— Calla Wahlquist (@callapilla) January 21, 2020
Even though some book lovers are deeply offended by this, Christofi very well may be on to something.
Esther Bell is a writer for the Daily Dot. She recently graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in journalism, and her work has appeared in Bustle and Teen Vogue.