Sunday, February 14, 2010

a bookshop job

i love my job, love working with books and getting to meet customers and talk about books - especially working in the children's shop because kids are always REALLY EXCITED when there's a new book in their favourite series and aren't afraid to show it.

however, i'm not the most patient person in the world and working in retail really really grates sometimes. for example, it's taken A LOT of self-restraint today when i've offered to gift wrap a book for a customer to not scream in their face when they ask: "can you take the price off?" and i know...i know...on principle it's a totally fair question, but when it happens thirty or forty times a day i want to yell WHY WOULD I LEAVE THE PRICE ON, YOU A-HOLE or at the very least respond with a resounding DERRR!!!

and don't get me started on parents with prams (particularly GIANT PRAMS)
or unattended children
or sticky fingers
or coffee spills
or stinky nappies
or twilight fans
or stupid questions (though my friend m takes the cake on this: someone came into her bookshop, looked around then asked "do you sell trumpets?" derr!)

but then sometimes it only five minutes i remember why i love being here: i get a reading copy of the new john green/joanne horniman/patrick ness (can't wait til may!) ; the girls from teen bookclub make my sides ache with laughing as they talk w/o breath about talking pigs, hamish and andy, you tube and occasionally the book itself ; a customer comes in especially to tell me that the book i recommended was a big hit ; jenny comes in and says "where the hell have you been?" like i'm an important bit o' furniture here.

...aaaaand...cut. enough. mi scusi.


  1. that sounds just like me when i worked in my bookstore!

  2. Well? Where had you been - you can't just change shifts and not tell us - we rely on you!!!
    This post made me laugh out loud - At work we get the price tag comment ALL THE F'N TIME. One day I stopped wrapping, looked up in surprise and said 'Oh sorry did you want me to leave it on?' That shut her up!
    Seriously, do they really think we are going to leave the price on a present?
    I could rant on and on about this topic - don't even get me started on the dropped saltanas, the weeing on the carpet, parents who think it's ok for their kids to sit in my window display. Maybe we should get together for a good cathartic rant one day!

  3. I haven't worked in retail for a few years, and recently I've been daydreaming about jacking in the office routine and working in a bookstore. This post has brough back a fair few memories of what retail is really like - the good and the bad. I'm still into the bookstore idea, but I think I'll be switching my daydream to 'lottery win' for a while!

  4. I totally 100% know what you are talking about! I was the children's book specialist for 3 years (I'm with you on all your "Or's")and I finally had enough and went on a loooong holiday, only to miss all my books, my regulars, and become absolutely distraught when I came back and saw what had become of my section. lol

    and the whole price tag thing? who in their right mind would leave it on?! do they think because we work in retail we are stupid? and stupid questions "I'm looking for a book and it is red" I apparently ruined the woman's Christmas because I could not tell her what the book she was looking for was!

    oh how i love a good rant:D

  5. Sarah
    Lol, do you sell trumpets... I like that one... Maybe she should have handed him/ her a book about trumpets.

    I've worked in retail too... Have you ever had a nacket toddler hand you the cash? I have... haha, little weird at the time!

    When in retail you see everyting, erm, most literally sometimes!

  6. Nacked, not nacket, sorry, it won't let me edit.


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