How do we come to like the things we like?

My boyfriend loves football. He grew up playing it, watching it. You could tell football is very much part of his life. Just check his phone; there on his home screen is a football app that he opens every day. He reads Soccernet (or ESPNFC) as if his life depended on it—though if he saw this now, I bet he'd say that it does. 

Walking back home this weekend, I asked how his life became closely interwoven with football. What is his origin story? When I think of myself, books is the single thread that is constant in my life. Books are to mine as football is to his. 

I remember receiving a hardbound book of Alice in Wonderland. My grandmother took two books from her library and handed them to brother and I. It still baffles me to this day to think that I got the full-fledged novel whereas my older brother, who could already read back then, got the easy-to-read book of short parables. If we were to base it on reading comprehension, I always thought it should have been the other way around.

In any case, Alice in Wonderland proved to be the turning point in my life. It was my origin story. It was how I came to love reading, and how my love affair with books began. Oddly enough, I don't think I read it in its entirety. But it sure as hell got me started (and complete) so many books after it.

 Sunday afternoons with my Kindle and tea

Sunday afternoons with my Kindle and tea


I should thank my mom for getting me started reading early. She saw me one afternoon, "reading" the Alice book when she realised I was holding it upside-down. She knew those pages lay adventures far more significant than what Alice's adventures carry. From then on, she took it upon herself to teach me how to read.

I wonder if we like the things we say we like because we're exposed to it the most. I don't remember how many books I have read but my Goodreads account is a good indicator (for now) of my regular reading habits.

Does the exposure breed interest? Kind of like how Spotify's Discover Weekly playlist could be a re-affirming loop that defines our music tastes. Or if we form a rare bond to it at the onset?

I wouldn't know, but if I could hazard a guess, I can't say I'm complaining.

Further Reading


If I didn't post it, did it even happen?