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What are you reading?

Guitar: Music History Players by Richard Chapman. It’s a history of guitar players and of the guitar itself. It goes through every type of musical genre you might hear a guitar in — blues, country, rock. It’s got full bios on the guitar players. It gives you an idea of what made them them, what inspired them, what instruments they used.”

What are your favorite parts?

“Always about one person — David Gilmour of Pink Floyd. I always want to know what makes him him — there are all these different takes on him. This is the first book that actually told me what his style was — he plays progressive blues rock.”

Have you read anything else lately?

“I just picked up The Complete Works of the Brothers Grimm. It’s nice to see how the stories were originally written, before Disney and everyone else had their own kind of happy, cheery ways with them. For instance, Sleeping Beauty — the story is only two or three pages long. They get to the point and don’t waste time with a lot of filler. Basically, in the Brothers Grimm version, a woman got mad and cursed the princess by making her and the entire kingdom fall asleep for 100 years. And then a lot of guys died trying to get through the thorn bushes to break the curse. The Grimms actually say that the guys died.”

What book or work has been the most life-changing for you?

“Music, and the lyrics of music, have always been inspiring for me. I think I’d say ‘Comfortably Numb’ by Pink Floyd. It’s from 1979, a very classic song; the lyrics are emotionally moving. When I listen, there’s this passion. The band is progressive, a living entity — the lyrics get better as they go.”

Do you have a favorite author?

“I like the authors of the classics. As a kid, I had instilled in me the idea that you must know the past because if you don’t, you can’t have a changed future. I like Tolkien’s work, but it’s very short-lived. Shakespeare’s stories have a timelessness — if you reword them with common terminology, the stories still make sense and are still enjoyable. I’m more into his darker stuff. But for my favorite, I’d probably go with Edgar Allen Poe. He’s poetic; there are so many sides to his work — it’s not all depressing, the way some people think it is.”

Do you read any magazines or newspapers?

“I read the basic area paper; it varies depending on where I’m at. I also go through the Reader and a lot of common magazines, the ones they lay out at stores or venues.”

How many articles do you read through to the end?

“I read about a quarter of the articles to the end, and about half of them most of the way through.”

Do you talk to your friends about reading?

“There are a few who read on the boat. In my group, I’m one of the lesser bookworms. I’m selective about what I read. I can’t just get into anything. If I talk about a book, I like to go into details and really critique it, talking about what was done right and what was done wrong; what details were left out and what stuff didn’t need to be included in the first place.”

Name: Morgan Medrano | Age: 24 | Occupation: Navy
Neighborhood: USS Nimitz | Where interviewed: Lestat’s CoffeeHouse, Normal Heights

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