Bookstore Bingo

*crossposted from Seven Deadly Divas*

The phone rings. I answer it (within the first two rings, of course).

“Hello, this is <Bookstore Name> in <Location>, Anna speaking, how may I help you?”


“Hi, do you sell books?”
No, the whole “Bookstore” part of our name is a joke, we really sell sticky widgets.


“Hi, do you have a book?”
Nope, we’re fresh out.


“Hi, I’m looking for frerkhtngrmwth.”
“Could you repeat that? I didn’t hear you clearly.”
“I’m looking for frerkhtngrmwth, by Thrrlblwrt K Hamthripth. You know, her new book.”
“Um… let me put you on hold just a moment and I’ll check.”
<checks new releases section for books with titles that sound like frerkhtngrmwth.>
“I’m sorry ma’am, I don’t seem to have any copies of frerkhtngrmwth right now.”
“Oh alright. I’ll try online.”


“Hi, I was wondering if you had <Obscure Book Title>”
“Give me just a moment and I’ll check the shelf.”
<checks shelf>
“I’m sorry, sir, we don’t have a copy of Obscure Book Title right now.”
“Why not?”
“Well, we’re a used bookstore, so our inventory is really unpredictable.”
“But I checked your online inventory and it says you have it.”
“…. We actually don’t have an in-store or online inventory. Are you sure?”
“Well, I looked it up on Amazon Dot Com, and it says you have the book!”


“Hi, I’m looking fer books on Yew-Bun-Tew Lye-Nucks. It’s a computerin’ book.”
“Just a moment and I’ll check the shelf for you. … I’m sorry, right now all we have are Red Hat books and some generic Linux books.”
“Naw, I don’t need them Red Hat things. I need a Yew-Bun-Tew book. Thankya though.”
<I actually had an extended conversation with this gentleman, and he knew exactly what he was talking about. But I had to try REALLY hard not to giggle.>


“Hi, I need a copy of Sandy Backerack for my kid.”
“uhh… do you know what kind of book it is?”
“He says it’s a play.”
“Well, I can’t find a record of any book with that title, are you sure that’s it?”
“Yeah, that’s what he said.”
“You’re sure it’s not Pygmalion? That book is on a lot of reading lists right now.”
“Yes I’m sure. It’s called Sandy Backerack and it’s about a guy with a really big nose.”
“You mean Cyrano de Bergerac?”
“Yeah, that one.”


… to be continued …

Lack of Competition

Let me preface this story by saying that both Comcast (for cable/internet) and AT&T (for wired land phone lines) have no competition in our area if you want *cable* TV and a dial tone that is a LAND line, not a VOIP/digital phone.

Yesterday was the official day of internet/phone hookups. It did not, in fact, go well.

Mr. Sleazy Comcast Guy showed up right at his little appt window, and was gone by 3pm. (1pm raid time). We have working internet – solely because I got lucky and had brought my laptop with me to have something to do while I waited – but no cable, because we didn’t have a TV there – nobody told us we had to have a TV there, even when I told the appointment making person that it was a vacant home – and since there wasn’t a TV they could check, they won’t leave a box.

Since, you see, it might be broken. And they don’t charge for *service* calls to a broken box, but they WILL charge me a full second installation fee to come and plug in a stupid box once I get the TV at the house.


My “appointment” with the phone company to get our land line hooked up – which is required by the security company to have our alarm system working – was 8am to 8pm. yeah. 12 hours. So I told them in really BIG YELLING LETTERS that they needed to call me first, since the house is vacant, and I can’t guarantee someone will be there to let them in.

And then I sat at the house from 8am until 8:30pm.

Nobody called. Nobody showed up.

So I called them this morning?

“Oh, we’re sorry, they were there sometime during the day and just flipped the switch at the street. Since there was a previous line there, we just assume that the jacks all still work and just activate it.”

Didn’t call. Didn’t leave a note. Didn’t even ring the (deleted) doorbell. I have no idea if it works – we don’t even LIVE THERE YET, so I don’t have our phone moved over there. The nice lady on the phone ran a line diagnostic and says it works, but since everything else in the house is broken, that means I get to take a phone around to every jack and plug it in and see which ones work and which don’t.

Not to mention the very weird bundle of wires sticking out of the wall that are supposedly some kind of ancient telephone hook up that I was told to ask our phone technician to test and fix.

I am, in fact, FURIOUS.

(Oh – and she said they would call the phone at the house and give me a survey. apparently she missed the part about NOT LIVING THERE YET.)