Barry Smith: Marital bliss on the bookshelf |

Barry Smith: Marital bliss on the bookshelf

Barry Smith

You can tell a lot about a person by the shoes he wears and the books he reads.

This particular column will not be about shoes, but about books. Specifically, a comparison between the books owned by my wife, Christina, and me. We keep a his and hers segregated bookshelf, you see.

If this doesn’t interest you, keep in mind that I’m planning on doing “shoes” in a future column.

Rather than offer too much explanation or analysis, I’ll just list the books, which I’ve divided loosely into categories. I feel that this will allow you, the reader, to form your own conclusions about whatever it is I’m trying to say.

These are all ACTUAL books which are ACTUALLY on our shelves at this very moment. Also, I haven’t included authors’ names, due to space limitations and the fact that it would involve ACTUALLY getting out of my chair and walking close enough to the bookshelf to read the smaller print.

So …



CHRISTINA: “Staying Healthy with the Seasons,” “Spontaneous Healing,” “Creating Health,” “Perfect Healing,” “Healing Ourselves and Others,” “Vibrational Medicine,” “Aromatheraphy,” “Herbs That Heal” and “New Choices in Natural Healing.”

BARRY: “My Cousin, My Gastroenterologist” and “The Art of the Tattoo.”


HER: “Rand McNally Contemporary World Atlas,” The Lonely Planet’s guides to: Asia, India, New Zealand, Australia, Indonesia, Africa, and “Let’s Go: Europe, Italy, France, Switzerland.”

ME: “Deluxe Maps To The Stars’ Homes” and “The Land Where The Blues Began”


HER: “Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus,” “Tristan and Iseult” and “Taoist Secrets of Love.”

ME: “Venus in Furs” and “The Best Erotic Cartoons of the Decade.”


HER: “Seeds of Peace,” “How To Make the World a Better Place,” “The Solution to Pollution,” “50 Simple Things You Can Do To Save t he Earth,” “The State of the World,” “Spiritual Ecology” and “Ecotopia.”

ME: “I Smell Esther Williams.”


HER: “The Power of Myth,” “The Fifth Sacred Thing,” “Initiation Sri Aurobindo-Adventures Of Consciousness,” “Bringers Of The Dawn,” “Handbook To Higher Consciousness,” “Creative Visualization” and “Ecstasy Is A New Frequency.”

ME: “The Long Dark Tea Time of the Soul,” “Zen to Go,” “The X-Files Book of the Unexplained” and “The Pop-Up Book of Phobias.”


HER: “The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets,” “The Spiral Dance,” “A Whistling Woman Is up to No Good,” “The Crone,” “The Politics of Women’s Spirituality,” “The Natural Superiority of Women” and “Women’s Ways of Knowing.”

ME: “Bride of the Far Side” and “The Ascent of Rum Doodle.”


HER: “Permaculture Design Handbook,” “Urban Permaculture,” “Food Not Bombs,” “GAIA ” From Chaos to Cosmos,” “Earthway,” “Living Water” and “99 Ways to a Simple Lifestyle.”

ME: “Willard and His Bowling Trophies.”


HER: “Diet for a New America,” “Fit for Life,” “Diet for a Small Planet,” “The Book of Macrobiotics,” “Sugar Blues,” “Raw Energy,” “Sprouting” and “Tissue Cleansing Through Bowel Management.”

ME: “The Restaurant at the End of the Universe” and “Play with Your Food.”


HER: “Gandhi,” “The Autobiography of Malcolm X,” “Picasso,” “Henry Miller,” “Tesla,” “Jung” and “Autobiography of a Yogi.”

ME: “La Toya ” Growing up in the Jackson Family” and “The Real Frank Zappa Book.”


HER: “The Magical Child Grows Up,” “The Continuum Concept,” “Three in a Bed,” “The Drama of Being a Child,” “Birth Without Violence,” “Waldorf Education” and “Circumcision ” What It Does.”

ME: “The Sneetches and Other Stories.”


HER: “The Ascent of Man,” “A Brief History of Everything,” “The History of Philosophy” and “The Secret Teachings of All Ages.”

ME: “776 Stupidest Things Ever Said” and “A Cartoon History of the Universe.”


HER: “Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway,” “The Tao of Physics” and “Kinship With All Life”

ME: “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas,” “The First 20 Years of Monty Python” and “Bring Me the Head of Willie the Mailboy.”

(Next time: Our revealing CD collection!)

Barry Smith’s column runs in The Aspen Times on Mondays. His e-mail address is, and his very own Web page is at