Exhibit #1: Customer looking for a new book by Bruce Springsteen, of where there is none. Customer huffs up to the desk some time later and slaps a book onto the counter, interrupting my conversation with another customer. She wants to prove that I was lying.
Me: You asked me for Bruce Springsteen, ma'am, that book is by Rick Springfield. If you had asked for Rick Springfield it would have made my job much easier. If you'll excuse me, I am assisting this gentleman with his purchase.
Her: Oh *little voice* sorry.
In a masterful twist, the customer had wanted to take the Rick Springfield book to the concert he was giving in Riverside so she could have it signed. A friend of mine was at the meet-and-greet - Rick Springfield didn't sign a thing. Karma's a bitch.
Exhibit #2: Horrid child screaming in the aisle "I wanna PRINCESS BOOK!!!!!"
Harried mother: "Santa doesn't bring presents for greedy children."
Horrid child: "I don't care about Sanna, I wanna PRINCESS BOOK!!!!!"
Hey lady, please take your child out; on the way, could I interest you in a lovely item called "Elf on the Shelf" - it will spy on your child and report to Santa, so we can make her neurotic as well as spoiled.
Exhibit #3: Too many books that play some sort of Christmas song when you open them. Add one child to start them all playing at the same time and watch the booksellers twitch.
And we still have students underfoot:
- a request for Owl Moon by Jane "Wollen" for a class project (how about Jane "YOLEN"?)
- I was asked for a "less hard" copy of A Wrinkle in Time....dude, CHILDREN IN GRADE SCHOOL are able to read that book, that's the target audience, you are IN COLLEGE (but I want to take that class if Madeline L'Engle is on the syllabus)
On the plus side, I got to spend an hour assisting a special ed teacher who works with disadvantaged teens; she bought lots of books and we had fun.