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    Life Is Stranger Than Fiction

    | Stoneham, MA, USA |

    Customer: “I’m looking for a book about a football player.”

    Me: “Do you know the title or author?”

    Customer: “It’s about a kid who plays football.”

    Me: “Is it fiction or nonfiction?”

    Customer: “Which is the real one?”

    Me: “You mean which is a true story?”

    Customer: “Yeah.”

    Me: “Nonfiction books are true stories. Is it a biography or autobiography?”

    Customer: *exasperated* “What’s the difference?”

    Me: “Biographies are written by someone else about a person, autobiographies are written by the person themselves.”

    Customer: “I doubt he wrote it; he’s a football player. Do you know how many hits those guys take to the head?!”

    Totally, Like, Excruciatus

    | Hazel Grove, NY, USA | Books & Reading, Geeks Rule, Movies & TV, School

    (Two girls enter the bookstore. I recognize them as being two ditzy girls from my English class.)

    Me: “Hey, [Girl 1] and [Girl 2], what’s up? I didn’t think you guys liked hanging out in bookshops?”

    Girl 1: *giggles* “Duh! Did you like think that we’re geeks or something?”

    Girl 2: “Like, duh, I’m just looking for this book for my sister.”

    (Said sister happens to be one of my good friends.)

    Me: “Oh, what book does Jen want?”

    Girl 2: “It’s like, this book with some totally geeky wizards or something.”

    Me: “Do you mean Harry Potter? She’s already got those books.”

    Girl 2: “Like, no duh! It’s like, written by some totally old-ish chick named Jane or something. It’s like, about this chick named Emma.”

    Me:Emma by Jane Austen hasn’t got any wizards.”

    Girl 2: “Ain’t Emma that witch or something? That nerdy, bushy-haired one?”

    Me: “That’s Hermione Granger. Her actress is Emma Watson.”

    Girl 2: *huffing* “What-EVER! I’m like, so totally out of here, you geek!”

    A Golden Snitch Short Of A Quidditch Match

    | Bay Area, CA, USA | Books & Reading, Family & Kids, Movies & TV

    Me: “How can I help you?”

    Caller: “This a bookstore?”

    Me: “Yes, this is a bookstore.”

    Caller: “Oh. I need the 8th Harry Potter book.”

    Me: “I’m sorry sir, but there are only 7 Harry Potter books.”

    Caller: “But I need the 8th one.”

    Me: “There are only 7 books, sir.”

    Caller: “Why?”

    Me: “Because there are only 7 years at Hogwarts.”

    Caller: “What does that mean?”

    Me: “Sir, have you read the Harry Potter books?”

    Caller: “No, my son reads them and he finished the 7th one and asked me to get the 8th one.”

    Me: “Sir, if he read the 7th one, he would know that that was the final book in the series.”

    Caller: “But he wants to read it. What can I do?”

    Me: “Contact the author?”

    Caller: “Do you have his number?”

    Me: “Do I have J.K. Rowling’s number?”

    Caller: “Yes.”

    Me: “No. I… uh… don’t happen to have that on me.”

    Caller: “Oh. Can you tell my son that there are only 7?”

    Me: “No, I’m sure you’re quite capable of doing that all on your own.”

    Caller: “He will be very upset!” *hangs up*

    How To Kill, To Kill A Mockingbird, Part 2

    | United Kingdom | Books & Reading

    (I find a young customer looking a little lost in the nature section.)

    Me: “Can I help you?”

    Customer: “Yeah, I’m looking for a book about killing birds.”

    Me: “Killing birds?”

    Customer: “Yeah, I need it for school.”

    Me: “Do you mean To Kill a Mockingbird, by any chance?”

    Customer: “Yeah that’s it! Do you have it?”

    (I take him to the classics section and show him the book.)

    Me: “You know, its not actually about killing birds.”

    Customer: “What?”

    Me: “It’s about social injustice in 1930′s America.”

    Customer: “Oh. That doesn’t sound as much fun. Do you have any books about killing birds?”

    Me: “I hope not.”

    Related:
    How To Kill, To Kill A Mockingbird

    Caesar 2: The [Roman] Empire Strikes Back

    | Connecticut, USA | Books & Reading

    Customer: “Do you carry books by Shakespeare here?”

    Me: “Yes, we do. Which play did you need?”

    Customer: “The one that sophomores read.” *gestures to the teenager next to her, presumably her daughter*

    Me: “I’m sorry, but there’s not just one play that sophomores read. Do you happen to know the title, or maybe what it’s about?”

    Customer: *loudly* “The-One-That-Sophomore’s-Read!”

    Me: “Well, let’s walk over to the section and see if we can figure it out. A lot of early high school students read A Midsummer Night’s Dream or Romeo & Juliet.”

    Daughter: “I think Romeo & Juliet.”

    Me: “Great!” *pulls out a copy to hand to her*

    Daughter: “I don’t know though.”

    Me: “Okay. Well, could it be Hamlet, maybe? Or Julius Caesar?”

    Daughter:Julius Caesar? Isn’t that the sequel to Romeo & Juliet?”


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