In the summer of 2006, we asked local author/publisher Dave Eggers to write an essay introducing Give a Kid Some Credit (to celebrate our 40th anniversary, we gave every 3rd grader in SF public school a $10 credit at the store; luckily not all 3,900 kids redeemed them). We didn't actually use his essay for the brochure (the mayor beat him out), but it got us thinking about things. Kind of. . . .
Here's Dave Eggers on "Why I Read":
I could sit here and say you should read because it makes your brain bigger and enriches your life in a thousand ways and makes you more attractive to everyone you love and want to love—and that’s all true —but the main reason I read is to avoid being eaten by goats. I don’t know about you, but I live around a lot of goats, and they love to eat people. And the only thing that seems to thwart them is books. Sometimes you can hit them over the head with your book, but usually just the sight of someone with a book is enough to send them on their way. I can’t tell you how many times I was almost eaten by a goat. Dozens, probably. And every time they’re about to cut into my foot with these big steak knives they use, they see me reading and they say, “Oh, okay. Forget it, man,” and then they go eat someone watching TV instead. So reading has that going for it. --Dave Eggers
Here are links to the other three (posted so far) "Why I Read" essays: by Peter Rock, Beth Lisick, and Susan Choi.