Sunday, November 13, 2011

Customers 30

A man, greyish, thinning hair, about 6"1', wearing jeans and a blue all-weather jacket, came up to the counter.

"Can I help you?" I asked.

"I'm looking for a book about Ireland," he said.

"Do you want travel/guide books about Ireland? Or more books with photos in them? Or..."

"I'd like one with photographs in them, sort of a coffee table book," he said.

"Well, let me see what we might have. There are a couple of places to look. Often in our bargain section there are books about Ireland," I said, walking toward the section. "Yes, here's one on on Spain...I'm not seeing Ireland right here," walking towards another bay to try and find another one.

"Did you know that Ireland was named after a goddess? The goddess Eire, E-I-R-E, was who they worshiped, so the name of the country is literally from Eire's land, which became Ireland."

"Hmmm, oh, I didn't know that," I said.

"And England," he said, warming up to his subject, "comes from Anglo-land, the people were called Anglos, as in Anglo-Saxon, so the name of the country came from Anglo-land and is now today England."

"Ah," I murmured. We were now in the pictorial book section of travel..."I'm not seeing anything on Ireland here, we have a lot that is more local. We have some books on Ireland in the general travel section, but they are really guide books."

"Yes," he said. "I don't need a guide book. Do you have any calendars?"

"We do!" I said. "And I know we have some on Ireland." I start walking towards the calendars.

"And did you know that Scotland derived its name from originally being called the Picts. The king of the Picts was originally called Rex Pictorum, but then they changed it to Rex Alban, which is translated as King of Scots, so the land became known as Scotland."

"Hmm, I didn't know that," I said. "Here are two Ireland calendars, and there might be more. This is the area they'd be in."

"Oh, that's great, just great. Thank you very much," he said. "This is just what I'm looking for."

I left him to look at the calendars. About 20 minutes later he came up to the register with two calendars to purchase, one about Ireland, the other showing Landscapes of Britain.

"Here's what I found," he said. "These will be great. Now if you want to find out more about the history of names...let's see, I was just reading about it in National Geographic, and it's right here..." He picks up a copy of National Geographic from the magazine rack that is right next to my register. "Let's see, it gives a lot of background and history..." He's flipping through the magazine... "Oh, here it is, the cover story. Anyway. It's a good article. You could look at it if you want to find out more about how places got their names. Thank you for your help."

"Sure, have a good day."


A man about in his mid 70's, blue rain jacket on, walked up to the information desk with a slight limp.

"Sandwiches," he said. "There's a book called SANDWICHES. Do you have it?"

I start searching in the computer."There are quite a few books with SANDWICHES as the title, do you know anything else about it?"

"It was featured in the Wall Street Journal a few weeks ago. And the author's name is Ron. I don't know the last name."

"Okay, hmm, I'm not getting anything with the title SANDWICHES and Ron, though there are quite a few books with SANDWICHES as the title...I'm going to search on the internet and see what might come up."

"Okay, I'm going to have to go sit down. I continue to search, using Google to search for the book, using Wall Street Journal and Sandwiches as search words. I find a book called SCANWICHES by Jon Chonko that has pictures of sandwiches, and print out an information page about the book.


I find him sitting in the children's section on a bench. "I did find a book called SCANWICHES that was featured in the Wall Street Journal, I'm wondering if this is the book you're looking for."

"That's it," he says. "That's the one."

"We don't have it in the store, but I can order it for you, would you like to do that?"

"Yes, I would," he says, starting to get up.

"Do you need to stay here? I can just get your information and place the order," I said.

"No, I'm okay now. I just had to sit for a bit," he said.

He follows me back to the information desk and I get the book ordered for him.

"Thank you," he says.


A woman, late 60's, dyed short brown hair, faded lipstick, comes up to me while I'm at the register. "Do you have any Christmas mysteries?"

"We do, though but they don't have their own section, they'd be mixed in with the regular mysteries, though a few of them might be on a Christmas table or in a new release display. I can get someone to help you find some."

"Oh, that's okay. I'll come back. I was already over in the mystery section. I don't usually read mysteries, only at Christmas! I don't know what that's about, really. I don't know, maybe I just like a little murder around the holidays, you know, something scary lurking behind the Christmas tree."

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