I know you’re wondering, “Brian J., did you and your beautiful wife actually drive 58 miles to go to a book sale?” Yes, gentle reader, we did. She spotted the book sale somewhere, and we decided to make an afternoon date of it. So we ate some lunch at Da Vinci’s , which might be the best Italian restaurant in Lebanon, but we have no way of really knowing as we’ve only eaten at one place in Lebanon. And we found the back room of the Lebanon-Laclede County Library, where they hold the semi-annual sale.
It was weird: The books were on shelves, not on tables. Somehow, that just made it feel very odd for us. Browsing books on a table is kind of ergonomic; they’re generally the same height, and you can scan the titles quickly. When they’re on shelves, you have to stoop and reach and whatnot. “But, Brian J., isn’t that just like the used book stores you like to frequent?” Well, yes, but my browsing at used book stores tends to be a little more selective, and my purchases a little more limited.
As it was this Friday.
- A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. Wait, didn’t I already read that just this year? Can I have forgotten it already? No, this is the Reader’s Digest World’s Best Reading edition, and I collect those. So I had to spend the dollar to get it. As a bonus: I can put it with the others of its type on my read shelves automatically without having to read it again!
- True at First Light by Hemingway.
- The First Man by Camus.
- Pop Art and Rococo: A Style of Fantasy, a couple of art books on styles I’m not overly familiar with. One day, some day, I might sound as smart as Lileks or Driscoll.
- The Tao of Meow, which sounds like it might be a Taoist book about cats, but it looks to be a collection of humorous verse akin to I Could Pee On This And Other Poems By Cats.
- History of China which looks to be less an in-depth history than a history and picture book like the Time-Life series.
My beautiful wife got a stack of magazines, a number of Daniel Silva suspense novels, and a cat puzzle that our nine-year-old has already halfway completed on the very table where I took the photo.
I also got four records:
- 3 by Earth Wind and Fire.
- Hooked on Classics II.
- The Best of Dean Martin.
- The Wiz original cast recording.
The record pickings were limited to two boxes. I suspect I’ll get more at the big Friends of the Springfield-Greene County Library book sale in a couple of weeks, but even then, the days of buying tens of records is probably at an end. I’m getting a little more selective in my purchases, as I’ve bought most of what I know I like by now. But then again, they might have a stack of pop records from Italy in the 1970s, and I’ll want them all.
Note, gentle reader, that this is not the furthest we’ve gone round trip for a book sale. Ten years ago, we went sixty-five miles round trip from Old Trees, Missouri, to Greenville, Illinois.
To think, I am still buying books.