Category: Books & Reading

Caused by stupid customers who know how to read (and often those who don’t!), feel for the poor librarians or book store clerks who are often tasked with finding a book solely by the color of its cover.

I Was Only Borrowing It

, | Kent, England, UK | Books & Reading

(I volunteer in a charity second-hand bookstore where all our stock comes from donations. A woman comes into the store.)

Woman: “Excuse me, do you have ‘The Book Thief?’ I can’t remember who wrote it.”

Me: “Um, I’m not sure. Let me check.”

(I ask a coworker, who knows the author. Once we have this we go to the fiction shelves, where the books are in alphabetical order by author.)

Me: “Sorry, we don’t appear to have it.”

Woman: “Oh, no! I need a used copy. I borrowed one off my friend and she wants it back, but my husband accidentally gave it to a charity shop and he can’t remember which one.”

Me: “We can have a look out the back, as we’re currently sorting out some stock.”

Woman: “Would you? Thank you.”

(I go out the back where shelves of books ready to go out are sitting. They are not in order so it takes a few moments to search, but luckily we have one.)

Me: “Got it!” *I hand it over*

Woman: “Thank you so much! This may even be the copy we donated.”

(We head to the till and she offers to pay as we are a charity.)

Me: *as she leaves* “Tell hubby it cost £20 to buy it back!”

Woman: *laughing* “Oh, he’ll be paying for this for a long time!”

(It was only afterwards that we realised the irony in losing a book called ‘The Book Thief!’)

This Is Not What A Feminist Looks Like

| Dayton, OH, USA | Bizarre, Books & Reading, Language & Words, Politics

(A woman approaches me at the counter, looking over her shoulder as if she is looking out for someone.)

Me: “Can I… help you, ma’am?”

Woman: “Yes, um, I was wondering if you had any books about…” *drops her voice to an urgent whisper* “… the ‘F’ word.”

Me: “Well, um, we have the ‘Kama Sutra’ in our world cultures section and our romance novel and erotica are—”

Woman: “No, no! The other ‘F’-word.”

Me: *thoroughly confused* “I’m afraid I’m not following ,ma’am…”

Woman: “The ‘F’-word, you know!”

Me: “Really, ma’am, I don’t. Would you like to write it down for me to—”

Woman: “FOR CHRIST’S SAKE! FEMINISM! I’m looking for a book on feminism! Now the whole store knows my business! THANK YOU!”

(She proceeds to quickly flee the store, apologizing to other patrons as she leaves.)

Next Customer: “Is she going to be all right?”

Me: “I certainly hope so.”

Fifty Shades Of (Christian) Grey

| OR, USA | Books & Reading, Religion, Rude & Risque

(I work at an accessories store in a mall. There is a Christian store that specializes in books and movies right across from our store, and next to the bathrooms. After directing a customer to the bathrooms, she comes rushing back in with her eyes wide and her cheeks flushed.)

Customer: “Is that the only bookstore in the mall?”

Me: “Oh, that’s not actually a bookstore. That’s a Christian store.”

Customer: “Oh. That explains why the cashier got so angry when I asked where to find Fifty Shades of Grey.”

See this story as a comic!