A young woman came in, long hair pulled back, wearing a navy raincoat. "I'd like to return this book. They cut the pages wrong." She put a copy of Stieg Larsson's The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest on the counter.
"Let me see," I said. "Where is it?"
"Right here on the edges. See how they are all uneven? It looks awful. Maybe you have another one that's done right?"
"Ah. Yes. That is done by the publisher, it's called a deckle edge. It's supposed to be that way. Some publishers do it that way because they think it's classier to have a deckle edge."
"What? So there aren't any that have smooth edges? This looks so bad."
"Ah, no. Evidently this publisher chose to have deckle edges, so all the copies of this book will be this way. Of course we are happy to take it back if you don't want to keep it. "
"Oh. No. Well, I want to read this. So I guess I'll just keep it."
A woman in her 40's or 50's came in, long black hair except for a striking white/grey streak of hair by her forehead.
"I need a gift card, please," she asked in an East Indian accent.
"Sure, we have some here," I gestured to the display, "and all of our designs are over here. Is it a birthday?"
"Yes." She smiled. "I'm getting 21 gifts for a 21 year old. We're doing kind of a scavenger hunt. Could I get $10 on it, please?"
"Sure. What a great idea!"
A man approached the information desk. Balding, in his 30's or 40's, t-shirt over his belly and wearing a blue jacket. "I have kind of a strange request. I hope you can help me."
"Sure, what are you looking for?", I asked.
"My wife is making a Harry Potter quilt. But we need to have pictures so she can put them on the quilt. And if you get any images off the internet, they are way way too small to use. When you blow them up, they are all distorted. Do you have anything that might have larger pictures from Harry Potter?"
"What a fun idea! Hmm, let me think. I wish our manager were here, she would be all over this. Do you know the Sylvia Beach hotel on the coast? They are redoing one of the rooms to be a Harry Potter room, so our manager was working with her to find Harry Potter things to put in there. Let's see. There is a book, I don't know if we have it in...let me check. It's all about Harry Potter and the movies, there are lots of pictures. It's called Harry Potter Film Wizardry, but unfortunately we're out of it. I could order one for you. Let's see if there's anything else.
"We had a lot more around the holidays and right when the last movie came out, now we don't have as much." We went to the film section and there wasn't anything on Harry Potter. I took him over to the activity area for kids and showed him some of the Harry Potter books there. "These have some good pictures..."
"Hmmm," he said. "These might work."
"You also might look at entertainment magazines, they might have some photos in them. I can also order that Film Wizardry book if you'd like. You're not obligated to buy it."
"Yeah, would you do that?"
"Sure! Good luck with the quilt!"
We've had some requests for a new book...
"Do you have that new book, Valley of the Pink Caves?"
"There's a new book in that series? By that woman? Something about unicorns in caves?"
What they've wanted is Jean Auel's latest book in her Earth's Children series...
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