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.

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Murdering Your Opinion

, | VA, USA | Bad Behavior, Books & Reading, Popular

(I work six hour day shifts on summer weekdays. As long as everything is clean and full, we’re allowed to read a book. I’m reading quietly, but set my book aside as the lone male customer approaches. I take his order, and we’re waiting for his card to go through when this happens.)

Customer: *gestures to book, the cover of which is hidden* “So, what trashy romance novel are we reading today? Twilight? Fifty Shades of Grey?”

Me: *silently holds up the book so he can see the title, which is “Murder on the Orient Express” by Agatha Christie*

Customer: “Oh… That’s a classic.”

Me: “Yes, sir. Now let me get you your ice cream.”

(Being pretentious about books is obnoxious. If he hadn’t been a customer I would have said something, but I could tell he was embarrassed when he left.)

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Marked For Better Things

| Philadelphia, PA, USA | Bad Behavior, Books & Reading, Popular

(I work at a small museum and do outreach programs for schools, libraries, community centers, etc. We have been warned that the AC is down in this location, so instead of my usual slacks, I wear knee-length shorts. Two small tattoos on my calf and ankle are visible. After the presentation, while I’m cleaning up the crafts table:)

Patron: “What are those things on your legs?”

Me: “They’re for my family, ma’am.”

Patron: “You’ll never get a job with marks like that on you.”

Me: “I do have a job; I’m working it right now.”

Patron: “You know what I mean; a real job.”

Me: “It IS a real job. And with all due respect, ma’am, you’re the one at a public library at two pm on a Wednesday.”

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Might Spot A Few Graphic Differences

| Iowa City, IA, USA | Bizarre, Books & Reading, Musical Mayhem

(While working at customer service at a bookstore a customer approaches me.)

Customer: “Do you have Candide by Voltaire?”

Me: “Yes, we do.” *I show her where it is*

Customer: “It’s in a weird place. Why isn’t it with the graphic novels?”

Me: “Because it’s not a graphic novel.”

Customer: “But he only writes graphic novels!”

Me: “I think you’re thinking of Voltaire the musician. This is by Voltaire the philosopher.”

Customer: “Oh. You’re sure they’re not the same person?”

Me: “Completely. Graphic novels didn’t really exist when Voltaire was alive.”

Customer: “Oh. Well, I might buy it anyway, in case it is the same person.”

(No matter what I said, I could not assure her that she was thinking of a different Voltaire.)