Je ne regrette rien

Book Blabber: Latter Library Sale and Mr. Book Hoarder

Posted in 100 Things, Book Babble, life, new orleans, research, Uptown by Amy on January 25, 2009

latterlibrary18 lib 1I love Wednesdays and Saturdays for one reason and one reason alone –  the book sale the Latter Library on St. Charles Avenue.

I am like a little kid on Christmas morning, waiting anxiously for Mom and Dad to wake up so I can tear into my gifts, seeing what surprises are hidden inside each beautifully wrapped box. I look at the clock, tap my foot, look at the clock some more, try to wake my husband up, watch the clock, try to wake my husband up again, and as soon as it hits 9:45 am, I am waking him up with an edge in my voice, wanting to go see what treasures I can find. As soon as I get there, I follow the same routine. First I look in the books that have had movies made from them, then the award winning books, then to the children’s section, self-help section, and ending with the trade paperbacks. I never leave empty handed, leading to the problem of too many books, not enough space that I am trying to tackle in my house now. Everyone wins with the book sale: owners get rid of old books hanging around, I get new books to hang around, and the Friends of the Library raise money for things needed in rebuilding the library system. The way I look at it, the more I spend, the more I am helping, right?

It may seem like such a simple thing, a library book sale, but how many of you get to go to a library that was once the mansion of a silent film star? Yeah, I didn’t think so. *sticks tongue out*

There is only one thing that burst my bubble on library sale day. PMS, Whiney Child, Cranky Husband, More month than money, illness, rain, sleet, snow

Mr. Pseudo-Intellectual, Book – Hoarder.

You see, every time I go to the book sale, which is nearly every week, twice a week, Mr. Pseudo-Intellectual, Book -Hoarder gives me and my husband the stare down. He sees us coming, he clutches onto his books a little tighter, starts searching a little harder, and douchebags it up a little better. He has watched us, my husband and I, and has studied us. He knows that I look for classics, while my husband looks for first editions of local and regional writers. He knows that I have a fetish when it comes to old, hardcover books. He knows this because, we intimidate him. Why? We could potentionally scoop up something that he missed.

He will hover over those work the sale, watching as they bring new books out, making sure he is the first person to see what is newly in place to be sold. While he is busy preying, his books sit on the stairs, and he will not be afraid to let you know that “Those. Are. Spoke. For.” as he pushes up the glasses on his face that have slipped down. Normally, I browse around him, knowing what his gig is, preferring to simply not acknowledge him.

Until today.

You see, Mr. Pseudo-Intellectual, Book Hoarder is too busy hovering and preying and hoarding to wander into the back rooms where the memoirs and the trade paperbacks call home. Me, well, I prefer the back areas – less people and more time to truly consider your choices! Today I came upon a heck of a find – Surprised By Joy by CS Lewis – Second Impression – from England – from 1955.

As we were in line, behind him, he noticed the book. My husband happened to be holding onto it, as I wanted him to check it out and my hands were full and books were close to falling out of them.

“Can I see that?” he stammered.

“Uh, yeah, sure man, ” my husband said, looking at me.

“Is that a first edition?” he asked, hovering over my husband, like a striped hyena hovering over a bird egg. I swear I saw him wipe the corner of his mouth, a direct result from the salivating he was doing at the thought of a first edition C.S Lewis book.

“No. It’s second impression, unfortunately.”

You could see the color drain from his face. He was clearly disappointed. Why, I am not sure, since my husband was holding onto the Holy Grail, clearly intending on bringing it home to the Promised Land.

“It is still quite a find, ” he said, almost like he was waiting for us to tell him to go ahead and take it.

“Honey, ready?” I said to my husband, waiting for that final book until our transaction could be complete and we could be on our way home to laze away the afternoon and read our new finds.

As we walked away, I looked at my husband, who was looking at me.

“Can you believe that guy?” my husband asked.

“No kidding, right? Every single week it is like this. You know, I really wish it would have been a first edition so I could have seen the look on his face as we walked away with the one that got away.”

Moral of the story: Don’t be a Mr. Pseudo-Intellectual, Book-Hoarding Type. There are enough books to go around for you to hock on E-Bay and for the rest of us to enjoy.

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5 Responses

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  1. liprap said, on January 25, 2009 at 10:04 am

    Good Lord, how annoying! It’s as though this person can’t determine when his world ends and the the rest of it begins with regards to these books. Makes me wonder how concerned he is with what is in them at this point…

    • Amy said, on January 25, 2009 at 10:17 am

      Oh, me too! What really makes me laugh, and I realize this is totally mean, is listening to him talk about writers and writing and publishers. And he isn’t even accurate! I just want to shake him! I haven’t let on yet that I have two books in line to be published, but I so want to give him the verbal smackdown! ok end of rant 🙂

  2. Loki said, on January 27, 2009 at 2:44 am

    We should meet at the sale and mess with him. Especially as he has no clue who I am…

    Greed. Isn’t that why the entire economy is tanking?

    • Amy said, on January 27, 2009 at 2:51 am

      I think his behavior justifies that! And I agree with your assessment on greed and the economy. It makes me very sad.

  3. Duff said, on January 27, 2009 at 4:39 am

    Be careful. You don’t want to upset his pyloric valve.


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