27 June 2007

The joy of used books.

I generally don't mind buying used books. In fact, one of the greatest joys in life (my life anyway) is to browse for hours through a good used book store. It's something that happens less and less now that I have small children, who tend not to understand these delights, but every now and then I get into a bookstore and find what I want.

About four or six months ago I bought a copy of Russell Banks's Continental Drift used. It sat on my shelf awaiting my attention and last weekend I started to give it some. I read about seventy pages over the course of a few days (I don't get enough time to read), and I was reading in bed when out of the pages dropped a little slip of paper that I assumed the previous owner used as a bookmark. It fluttered down on my sheet and I picked it up.

The previous owner had bookmarked his/her book with the backing strip to Dr. Scholl's Corn Remover (or Reducer) pads. And a few pads were still attached to the backing strip. Now I've bookmarked with many things in my literary life, from ATM receipts to paper towels to actual real bookmarks, but I've never used some sort of medicinal supply to do such, and certainly not something related to my nasty feet. But I suppose they were right at hand when needed.


Reya Mellicker said...

This is great, Cuff.

I found a marijuana roach in a library book once, long ago. Imagine my surprise! I think the book was "Watermelong Sugar" by Richard Brautigan ... which helps explain how the roach ended up there.

Momentary Academic said...

Used book stories are awesome. I don't have one really. I'm lame.

d. chedwick bryant said...

Reya's used book story is the best. I was just going to say I only fiound old receipts for drugstore items or groceries in my used books.

Once a friend of mine kept telling me to go to this bookstore and look at this big old used art book-- he even mentioned a page #, he harped on it for weeks--so I went and he'd put a silly note to me in the book--- a "made ya look" sort of note.

Jeremy said...

Used books are cool! New Books are too expensive for me and my kids to afford. I found a cool place that sells used books in bulk called booksliquidation.com. For less than fifty bucks I got my kids 100 books that would have cost me a couple hundred bucks. And it even included shipping. Worth checking out if your into used books but on a strict budget. Great story, man.