Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Tattoos and Books

Forget a review in the New York Times, apparently the latest in book promotion is the temporary tattoo.

The top one is for The Hobbit, and the bottom for Carl Hiaasen's Bad Monkey. There have been a lot of other temporary tattoos making their way through the bookstore, mostly for young adult stuff, but clearly the trend has encroached into adult books as well.


I have to say, a busy day at the bookstore, highlighted by sweltering heat, impromptu construction, lovely customers, and even lovelier coworkers (not to mention the temporary tattoos...I'm not the only one sporting "Bad Monkey" on my arm), has left me a bit melancholy- a tad low. Bar exam results come out soon. And whether I pass this time around, or the next, I am beginning to accept that I won't/can't be a bookseller forever.

I love a lot of things in life. I love my family and friends, Stephen Colbert, hockey, whales; I love the desert, coffee, and old movies; I love cats; I love a certain band; and for a long, long time, I have had a pretty hot and heavy love affair with books.

Of all the above mentioned, and others left out, I would venture to say that my love of books is what defines me most. I read books, I know about books, I surround myself with books. If you're talking about books, and I chance to overhear it, I will unapologetically and aggressively insert myself into your conversation.

Books are a part of me. I'm good at books. I'm good at reading them, good at recommending them, and good at talking about them. I'm good at shelving and alphabetizing them, and good at displaying them in just the right way. And knowing that one day, in the possibly very-near future, I'll have to leave it all behind- makes me so sad. How do I go about this gracefully? Leaving something I love and something I'm good at- something I know- for something I'm not really sure I'm capable of. It feels like I'm abandoning a part of me- a living, breathing, visceral part of me. How do I do that without collapsing into a hysterical mass of tears and paper cuts? (paper cuts because I will be gripping all the books so tightly, not wanting to let go...get it?)