Atop his current list is the desire to read better. Even now Schlereth reads slowly and with great effort. He sometimes practices by reading aloud to his wife, Lisa, and two stepchildren, Alexandria, a second-grader, and Daniel, who's in first grade. A few years back he took a special interest in a remedial reading class at an elementary school near his home in Herndon, Va. He bought a book for each student. "And one for me, too," says Schlereth. A month later he returned. "The kids shared what they had read," he says, "and I shared what I had read."
It wasn't until this year that he attempted his first "really thick book"—a biography of serial killer Ted Bundy. "Someday," says Schlereth, "I'll get to the classics." Don't doubt him. "My whole life I've been told, 'You can't! You can't!" he says. "I tell them, 'I can,' because I know I can do whatever I want to do."