I get really angry whenever I walk past our collection of World Book encyclopedias. I distinctly remember when we bought them. The woman who sold them to us was sitting at the kitchen table with my parents, and I was nearby on the floor of the family room. I was eight years old and casually reading through the dictionary, which was a pretty typical evening pastime of mine. I was happy in that innocent little way that only children can be.
Just then, the World Book saleswoman looked over, noticed what I was doing, and told my parents that I was an odd child. She turned to me and said, "You shouldn't be reading the dictionary. You should be doing something fun!"
I scrunched up my face and looked to my parents. I expected them to defend me, to support my love of words and reading and learning. Instead, they let out a traitorous laugh and signed away a large chunk of money for the horrid lady's encyclopedias.
I will never forget.