REPRINT: Overheard in the Little Bookstore at Christmastime

They said WHAT?!

We take pleasure in reprinting here a seasonal blog from 2013. Read it and laugh. Us, we drink heavily….

Here, in random order, is a list of our favorite customer sayings complied from Christmases past and present (hee hee, get it, present? Oh, never mind):

A woman asks: “Do you have any books about how to be a good husband? Maybe two or three.”

Extended family, browsing, grandmother says to daughter: “Books for the kids? I dunno. Shouldn’t we get them something they’d really like?”

“I’m looking for a book, it’s about a small town, and the people are kinda sweet and backwards.” Against our better judgment, we tried Adriana’s Big Stone Gap series, Thornton Wilder’s Our Town, and Jan Karon’s Mitford books. The customer wanted “Winesburg, Ohio.”

Customer points to a shelf: “You had a book somewhere around here last week; it had a red cover, something about a bird, or maybe it was a dog? I thought my sister would like it. I think the title started with ‘A Day’ or maybe it was ‘My Dog’ or ‘The Day.’ You know, something like that.”

After child rips page out of a picture book while mother browses nearby: “I’m not going to pay for that. You shouldn’t have the children’s books lying about where children can reach them.”

“Do y’all sell Christmas presents here?”

Christmas Eve Day, noon: “So the Christmas books are half off now, right?”

Christmas Eve Day, 3 pm, man enters with little girl, takes her straight to children’s room: “That’s right, honey, anything you want. Mommy said we can’t come home until 5.” Closes children’s room door with daughter inside, turns to staff: “Got any coffee?”

Christmas Eve Day, 4 pm: “…and I wouldn’t normally think of shopping at a bookstore for him, but y’all are right near the house and still open.”

Christmas Eve Day, 5 pm: “I need a gift for my mother-in-law. I don’t care what it is. Just make sure it’s big and heavy. And wrap it for me.”

Christmas Eve Day, 5:50 pm: “Excuse me, do you know a lot about books? OK, pick me out something a 14-year-old will like. Quick, I’m in a hurry.”

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5 Comments

Filed under Big Stone Gap, bookstore management, Downton Abbey, humor, Little Bookstore of Big Stone Gap, reading, shopsitting, small town USA, Uncategorized, Wendy Welch

5 responses to “REPRINT: Overheard in the Little Bookstore at Christmastime

  1. Doris

    Used to work at BORDERS, back in the day. Best questions was a customer looking for a picture of Moses. We clerks thought of Charlton Heston, but customer want a photo of the original Moses. We then asked if they wanted it in black & white or in color 🙂 Or the person trying to get into the store at 5:59 on Christmas Eve, when we close at 6 (they just wanted to look around). Gotta love the public

  2. I am so fortunate: both sets of grandparents thought the perfect gifts for children were a book and fancy pajamas. We always got BOTH, and I still have some. In fact I grew up reading the Grosset and Dunlap beautifully illustrated books for children that were given to my mother starting ~1926 when she was 9, and the St Nicholas Readers given to my father at the same age.

  3. Well, according to your better judgment, I’ll try Adriana’s Big Stone Gap series, Jan Karon’s Mitford books, and … “Winesburg, Ohio.” Alas, I cannot purchase those treasures in your LBofSG.

  4. A bookstore open ’til 6PM on Christmas Eve? You’re NUTS!

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