So it’s January, 2010: a whole new year, a whole new slate, a whole new month without donating books.
Yeah, we’d like you to keep ‘em at home just now whilst we deal with all those year-end donations from people who needed one more tax deducation. We had a house-organizing service find out about us, and a book rescuer (doesn’t like to see books in recycling bins), and some small but significant architecure collections, and a couple of estates, and all sorts of people who thought we’d find a good home for their orphans and strays. So if you’d just hold off until February, we’d be just as pleased.
Make it a resolution, in fact. I like resolutions that involve merely one month’s sacrifice.
I have made a few public resolutions myself. (My private resolutions are none of your business, seeing how unkind people are to those of us who resolve the same things year after year. This must be the sixth year in a row I’ve resolved to win the lottery, but somehow…still, the spirit is willing.) In 2010, I resolve:
1. To remember that everyone knows how to run a Book Fair better than I do, especially if they’ve never worked at one.
2. To remember that the things people do to try to help proceed from the purest of motives (the motive to see me get the very best care for my ulcers)
3. To remember that customers trying to get the prices knocked down to a quarter are not ALWAYS the same people as the donors who insisted all their books were worth $37 apiece
4. To remember that some people are not perceptive enough to appreciate the beauty and bounty of clutter
5. To remember to enjoy the variety (and/or clutter) of the unexpected every day: the volunteers who wants to discuss UFO abduction, the donors who want to drop off book at 7 A.M….on a Sunday, that bag of books that includes your grandmother’s false teeth, and even the occasional banana box.
6. To remember that what may seem little irritations in the day’s occupation—or even huge irritations—serve the greatest goal of mankind: to read something funny in my blog the next day
I have resolved to remember all these things, not, perhaps, at the exact moment they come to me, but soon enough afterward to forgive people for having made me murder them and bury them in the parking lot. (Have you ever tried to patch a six-foot gap in the asphalt? No wonder I never get my eBays mailed out on time.)