Your RDA of Irony

Looking for Mr. Good Book

Beset by bankruptcy, my local Borders bookstore is closing.  However, the corporation can still afford email and it has been barraging me with notices of the great sales at the soon-to-be shuttered locale.    “Everything Must GO!”  Today I had some free time and Karen trusted me with the car, so I decided to bargain-hunt.  You know, I didn’t have a comprehensive history of the Netherlands.  Well, I still don’t.  Everyone else apparently got it first.

Of course, I was open to any bargains.  Somehow the Twilight calendars didn’t appeal to me, however.  But the history shelves were not completely barren.  I was tempted by a history of Sicily, at least until I started perusing it.  The introduction certainly made a vivid first impression.  “When you say Sicily, you probably think of the Mafia.  But there is more to Sicily than that.”  Judging from the author’s tone, I would probably learn that Sicily is a big island in the Mediterranean Sea–which is filled with water.  Yes, I could see why the book was still for sale.

There was also a history of ancient Alexandria, and its author did have a style appropriate for an intelligent adult.  Borders almost had a sale, at least until I read the author’s biographical sketch.  He cited among his achievements being the historical consultant on “Elizabeth”, the film featuring Cate Blanchett as Miss Tudor.  That film did correctly depict Elizabeth’s hair color, and that the extent of its historical accuracy.  In other words, the consultant was bragging about being either a liar or a studio stooge.  I no longer could trust anything he had to say.   

I did finally find a book with an interesting topic and a reputable author.  It is a history of Germany’s Jews.  Now, don’t tell me how it ends.

p.s.  Let’s not forget the historic significance of this day:

  1. tsitrian says:

    I did once find a good book at Borders titled “Armenian Contributions to World Culture.” Both pages were fascinating.

    • Eugene Finerman says:

      Now, John, your Byzantine ancestors gave the world bureaucracy and remain the inspiration for Human Resource Departments and medical billing procedures. No wonder you are trying to pass yourself off as an innocuous raisin dryer.


      • tsitrian says:

        I and my peer group of dads with adolescent daughters considered ourselves fortunate that Borders’ heyday occurred as our little girls were blossoming into little women. There was a certain comfort zone in knowing that they and their friends had a place to hang out where they could be cool without having to do drugs and alcohol. The local one even had open mikes on weekends–and if hormonal urges had to be a factor, at least we knew the guys had probably read a book or two and might actually bring some wit and intelligence into the relationship.

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