Monday, September 26, 2011

The Corruption of Fine Young Minds

Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored!" Have you heard anything about the protests on Wall Street? Me neither. Gonna be a big, fat black eye for the mainstream media if they don't get down there and cover this. I want to get this post done in time to catch ABC News and see if they are with us or agin us.

On to today's sermon: the corruption of fine young minds with evil reading material known as books!

Every year in September, the Friends of the Snobville Library hold a big used book sale. People line up like ... hmmm ... like ... hmmmm ... maybe like ... vultures? Yeah, that would be it. Vultures. People line up to get the "good stuff" cheap, so they can re-sell it on Ebay.

This year there was a good deal of kvetching from the customers. The Friends of Snobville had set the price of a hardcover at $3.00, a quality paperback at $2.00, and a "pocket paperback" at $1.00.

You do the math. Seven books, and you're out $20.00. That's a lot of cash for someone else's books.

In years past, I used to go to this sale to buy books for my classroom. But at those prices I couldn't afford it. My salary has dropped $150 per paycheck with all the new deductions for health care and pension, and losses of occasional coverage that paid $30 per class period.

You could say I was fuming. Snobville at its snobbiest!

But wait, dear readers. I was determined. It paid off. It just goes to show that if you really are hell-bent on corrupting minors, it can always be done.

The sale ran on Saturday and Sunday. Same prices on Sunday. So on Sunday I showed a Friend of the SL my Vo-Tech teacher ID and asked for a discount. Lo and behold, they let me take any book I wanted for free!

Trust me, readers, I went over those tables of books with one thought in mind: Is this book banned, or could it be banned, or was the ban recently lifted, soon to be returned? If the answer was "yes," I grabbed that puppy. I think I got about 60 books, all first-rate filth. Tuesdays with Morrie? I'll bet there's a swearword or sexual innuendo in there somewhere. Da Vinci Code? Blasphemy! (I got three copies.)

I did wait until late on Sunday afternoon to do this gleaning. I thought it was kind enough of the FotSL to let me have free books -- I wanted to wait until they had sold as much as they could at those inflated prices.

Maybe you've been to a used book sale? Generally in the last hour, they shout, "Fill a bag for five bucks!" After which new scurrying ensues.

The Snobville answer to this was, "Fill a bag for thirty bucks!" Pinky swear. I've paid that for a bag of hard shell crabs, nicely steamed and seasoned ... but used books? For the love of fruit flies!

I guess that idea didn't fly too well, because only a few minutes later, the same Friend shouted, "Fill a bag for ten bucks!" Which seemed slightly more reasonable but still steep, since all the good, banned stuff was gone.

And then the funniest exchange occurred. It was classic. Apparently some woman had picked out a bunch of books earlier in the afternoon and then had plopped down on a bench, waiting for the buck-a-bag call. (Probably has read so many banned books that she used her life as a bookmark and misplaced the book.)

Here was the conversation, so far as I eavesdropped:

Friend: I'm sorry. We can't sell you these at that price. We have watched you sitting there waiting for us to drop the price.

Crazy woman: You just said, "Ten dollars a bag." You have to honor that!

Friend: No, we won't honor it with you. It's not fair for you to get good books and sit around until the price drops.

Crazy woman: It doesn't matter how long I've been here. You just said, "Ten dollars a bag." Is that what you're charging, or not? It's not fair if you have one price for me and one price for everyone else.

Friend: You're trying to cheat.

Crazy woman: No, you're being unfair!

At this time I sauntered past, lugging my huge cart of freebies, nodding gratefully at the gent and noting the crazy woman's quick appraisal of my haul (nothing valuable, all banned and banged up).

It was lovely for the Friends of the Snobville Library to give me books for my classroom. As for the crazy lady who spent her Sunday afternoon waiting for a discount on books she'd picked out five hours earlier, wow. Not sure how to call that one. I'll leave it up to you.

Off I go to pollute my students' minds with Bella and her vampire!

4 Comments:

At September 26, 2011 , Blogger Debra She Who Seeks said...

I think the Crazy Lady had a point. They did NOT qualify their "Ten dollars a bag" offer by saying the books had to be picked out right there and then, not before.

 
At September 26, 2011 , Anonymous alex Pendragon said...

This is why mankind cannot be allowed off this planet. To much drama to pollute an otherwise amazing universe.

 
At September 27, 2011 , Blogger Intense Guy said...

I think I have to agree with Alex.

I think once the offer was expressed (fill your bag for x dollars) it should have been honored no matter who the customer.

 
At September 27, 2011 , Anonymous BellaDonna said...

GOOD for them, letting the teacher get books for free! :-)

Next time, if they see someone who is obviously holding onto but not buying books, I think they should go over and tell the person to either pay or put them back; it's not fair to "hold" books until the end so you can choose how much you pay for them. But they need to do it as soon as it's obvious what's going on, AND it should be clearly posted.

 

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