the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

The Top of the Bookcase

I know so little about any of you. I admire you all, like books in a bookcase, each with a different flashy cover, but I rarely read more than a few pages of each book. And when I do read you, you hide, afraid of me seeing what is hidden, of discovering the dust on the top of the bookcase.




  1. Danny

    If I were your mother, I’d be screaming at you right now for showing the world the dust on top of my bookcase! Now be a good Jewish boy and Lemon Pledge it before she gets home, making sure you put the Hummels back in place.

  2. mommyknows

    You’re right!

  3. Chag

    Dude, your mom is going to kill you!

  4. TorontoPearl

    Tchochkes + books = a great combination.

  5. Getting Single

    I am not one to comment on the dust in the bookshelf. I have armies of dustbunnies living under everything and every now and then they send a scout out to investigate what else they can conquer. So far, they’ve overtaken the top of my wardrobe, shelf in the hallway, and my little collection of vintage cows on the shelf over my sink. All places that require me to have a stepstool to see them.

    They’re clever, those little dustbunnies…

  6. People in the Sun

    Is that an original Ming Dynasty vase? You’re rich!

  7. flutter

    I am on my way with some pledge.

  8. Neil

    People in the Sun — I’m going to tell my mother that one on the phone. She will laugh. (she is really into Antiques Roadshow and we always talk about how we have NOTHING of value in the house)

  9. Laura

    ohmygod, This is such a GREAT post!

    I like it so much I’m not even going to attempt wit.

  10. Alison

    I see some Zola in there. Nothing good can come from Emile Zola.

  11. kimberlee

    OMG – a pox on Alison. I couldn’t wait to comment ZOLA! I love Zola and I love the fact your mother has Zola! So now, I guess I love your mother…

  12. chantel

    I live in an old apartment. Everything in my house has a layer of dust on it.

  13. sassy

    I live in a house that is over 200 years old, so I do consider myself to be an authority on dust. You call THAT dust? Lemmie show you my cellar !

  14. V-Grrrl

    Valuables are a pain in the —. So are antiques. But dust? Dust is Nature’s Decoration. It’s organic! You should write a post about this for your green blog.

  15. better safe than sorry

    you are going to force your mother to come back and clean her house!

  16. Kyran

    I didn’t notice the dust, because I am far too distracted by that possibly very cool yellow bench? chaisse? over your shoulder…

    thanks for the crush, Neil. Backatcha xo

  17. teahouseblossom

    Hello, Neilochka,
    Thanks for the Tchotchka
    Nice to see you grouse,
    Now go and clean your house!

  18. Annie

    Neil, who’s hiding? Not me. If I lived close I would come clean that dust for you :-). By the way that is a very cute photo of you with your lovely smile.

  19. Finn

    Good lord, man, I’m sneezing just looking at that picture. Dust that!

  20. Diane Mandy

    Tell me there aren’t any Precious Moment figurines in that collection.

  21. catnip

    Is this a challenge to see has more dust on their shelves? Cause dude, I’m pretty sure I got you beat.

  22. Miss Grace

    Check it. I don’t even HAVE bookcases. You can’t judge what does not exist my friend.

  23. Marie

    Dust, schmust. You need a little cat hair in there.

    And are those clean clothes you’re wearing?

  24. Nat

    Dust… little itty bitty skin flakes.

  25. Chris

    All I see is Tom Wolfe’s “I Am Charlotte Simmons”, and a nice man, and dust. We all have the dust. I don’t know why we hide it.

    Another fantastic Blog Crush. I will read her book too.

  26. Dragon

    I guess I would be a cookbook. Hmmm, I’d much rather be an erotic novel with nothing to hide; just veiled.

  27. AnnieH

    I’ll tell you what I tell my patients…”No one wants to be looking at the family treasures there. Just cover that stuff up.”

  28. V-Grrrl

    P.S. I like this photo of you.

  29. Neil

    Thanks V. I didn’t even photoshop anything like I usually do.

  30. 3boys1mommy

    I can’t seem to find the Confessions of a Shopaholic series in your bookcase… must be on your nightstand.

    I think you should make that picture your new avatar Neil, it’s way cuter than creepy hat guy 😉

  31. Whit

    If you’re reading my book may I suggest the Clif Notes, or perhaps waiting for the movie.

  32. LVGurl

    I’ll tell you whatever you want to know.

    Especially if you add gin.

    Just ask Kim.

  33. Elisabeth

    The dust doesn’t matter. What does is that you have a book on Zola prominently displayed in the bookcase.

    And thanks for your endorsement of the Pittsburgh Steelers the other day. I am catching up with my blogroll. Way to go, Sixburgh!!!

  34. Long Story Longer

    Here’s something about me: I have mild OCD, and while the orderly table behind the couch soothes me, that dust is giving me a rash.

    Also, what a flattering photo of you. Very nice, Neil.

  35. Jack

    I use dust as a very cheap burglar alarm. Ok, it doesn’t work that well. But it is a great way to know when my guests have been snooping around. 😉

  36. anymommy

    I love that other people thought of the word tchochkes when they read this post. Mainly because it saved me from looking up the spelling. So, if Toronto Pearl can’t spell, I’m screwed.

  37. TorontoPearl

    ANYMOMMY, if Toronto Pearl can’t spell, SHE’S screwed!

    (I make my living as a copy editor.)

  38. John

    Hello Neil! Just saying hi, I’ve been mostly out of the bloggy loop for a while. Hope the new year if off to a good start for you my friend. : )

  39. mommymae

    nice one

  40. Sarcastic Mom

    There is no shame in showing your “dust.” It’s way more fun to share our dust and become chummier than it is to bust our asses hiding it from one another.

    Dust is so hawt.

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