Sunday, July 18, 2010

Bookstore Bingo FTW

For all the employees, ex - employees and honorary employees as well as store - lovers, here's something you'll love and relate to!! Use the link to go to the site (it's pretty cool) but the write - up is below.

Years ago, when I worked at a large bookstore in Manhattan, I often muttered to myself: "Retail. Only the strong survive." Judging by the many, many wonderful entrants in yesterday's round of #bookstorebingo on Twitter--aka Crazy Things Customers Say, fueled by yesterday's Notes from an ER Bookseller--some things never change.

Apparently, quite a few customers just didn't pay attention in school:

GlennWhidden: Do you have (pause, consult reading list) Hamlet? It's by (pause, consult list again) Shakespeare?

LFrannie33: Overheard: "Can you tell me who the author of Shakespeare is?"

mmerschel: "Do you have Shakespeare in English?"

Bookdwarf: I'm looking for a book but I only know the title, not the author. It's called Dante's Inferno.

VillageBksBham: "Who wrote Jane Austen?"

ragesinggoddess: @Watermarkbooks had a summer-long Jane Austen bookclub. Had someone ask when she would be there.

delmorepilcrow: "Where do yall keep the true fiction?"

joebfoster: "I definitely don't want nonfiction. I like autobiographies and history."

Then there's those memorably weird (sometimes unsettling) queries:

Bookdwarf: "Do you have books on monkeys, monkeys doing things like people?" (turns out they wanted monkeys having sex)

joebfoster:"This is the only bookstore I've ever been in that didn't have a popcorn machine."

LFrannie33: "I'm here for a Bible, not the KJV or anything. I'm looking for the original. You know the one that God wrote."

joebfoster: One of my all-time faves: "My new girlfriend is pretty churchy. Would a Gutenberg Bible be a good gift?"

handeebks: Another fave from the brick & mortar days "Do you have any books with red covers? I'm redecorating my living room in red."

ChatNoirBooks: Cust asks about return policy so I ask her why.... "Well if I don't lose weight I should be able to return the book right?"

julialikesbooks: "I'm looking for white supremacy books. I tried to order them and they were stopped at the border. Can you imagine?!" #bookstorebingo

KatherineBoG: We keep getting emails from a guy who wants us to do an event w/ Pam Grier. He has no connection, just want to meet her

amyeureka: Overheard @EurekaBooks: Kid: "What is this place?" Mom: "It's a library."

Handeebks: "What do you mean? Why can't I leave my 3-5 yo (unattended) in your shop while I go next door?!?"

chelseathe: Customer asks where 'nonfiction' is. I say it's broken up into history/bio etc. She calls us a bad bookstore. Really?

corpuslibris: Most commonly asked non-book-related question: Do you have a copy machine? 2nd most common: Do you sell stamps?

And that saying about how "the customer is always right"? Not so much.

bookladysblog: My favorite #bookstorebingo mistaken title: The Glass Menage a Trois.


KatherineBoG: Woman asked for CRUCIBLE, I gave it to her, she said "not the screenplay. The REAL one."

joebfoster: 2nd week as bkseller, lady looking for the KITE WALKER. Was PISSED when I suggested that KITE RUNNER might be a quicker read.

ChatNoirBooks: Oooo Ooo - Tillers of the Earth. Was completely insulted when I suggested she might be looking for Pillars of the Earth.

3rdplacepress: "Do you have Atlas Rugged?". "Uh. No, don't you mean Atlas Shrugged, by Ayn Rand?". "No. I need Atlas Rugged."

KatherineBoG: Woman was outraged that we had signed Susan Branch bks b/c she said Branch died 2 yrs earlier. We had her in the week before.

lauriemuchnick: When I worked at Waterstone's Charing Cross Road, people would ask, Is this Foyle's? I never said, Can you read the sign?

Sometimes, these experiences lead to rewarding moments of win:

ragesinggoddess: I like to think my ability to track down books from customer-provided cover colors is legendary.

ChatNoirBooks: I'm looking for a book. It had a chicken on the cover & my sister really liked it. Total WIN with no more info we found it.

GlennWhidden: Do you have those mystery novels by Angela Lansbury? I said yes and showed him the books by "Jessica Fletcher." He was happy.

And perhaps my favorite:

joebfoster: Someone once told me that the US government classified ANGELS & DEMONS as fiction to help the Vatican with the cover-up. --Robin Lenz


madhavi.pothukuchi said...

HAHAHAAHAHA!..this is priceless!! :D

koshish said...

Too good! We at The Book Leaf already have some of our own (in just 2 months of existence)! The most common one being - IS THIS A LIBRARY?! And on getting "Yes" as an answer, WOW!!! DO YOU RENT BOOKS OR SELL THEM?

janaki said...

for us at tnt, we have lived with "are you a library?" for too long !