Ancrene Wiseass

A would-be medievalist holds forth on academia, teaching, gender politics, blogging, pop culture, critters, and whatever else comes her way.

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Yes, this really is yet another blog by a disillusioned grad student. I sympathize, but that's just the way it has to be. For hints as to what my bizarre alias means, click here and here and, if needed, here and here. To get a sense of what I'm up to, feel free to check out the sections called "Toward a Wiseass Creed" and "Showings: Some Introductory Wiseassery" in my main blog's left-hand sidebar. Please be aware that spamming, harassing, or otherwise obnoxious comments will be deleted and traced.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

A Bookstore Conversation

Shane's gotta know that I'm going to post a reply to his comment on my last post. But I'm just past it tonight, having put in a particularly appalling performance at the dojang. So, instead, I offer you an entry inspired by New Kid's latest post on a question a fellow customer asked her at the bookstore.

Scene: It is 1994, and I am working in my undergrad college bookstore. I'm on a platform behind one register, and my kick-ass lesbian co-worker is behind the other. Sullen Frat Dude approaches. A few books lie on the countertop, awaiting reshelving. One of them is Beavis and Butt-Head's Ensucklopedia, which came with an embedded sound board that allowed readers to play catch phrases from the show. It's the last week of the term, and we've already fielded at least five requests for textbooks sent back to the publisher weeks ago because the students in question hadn't bothered to pick them up.

Me: Can I help you?
Sullen Frat Dude: (Peers up from beneath his low-riding, filthy, but meticulously broken-billed white hat.) I gotta read a book called, uh, 1982?
Me: (In Customer Service mode, but probably not entirely repressing a look of confusion and shock.) Do you mean 1984, maybe?
Sullen Frat Dude: (Mumbles, with a dismissive flick of his wrist.) Whatever.
Me: (Still uber-polite, peering at the inventory screen, but perhaps speaking a bit too brightly now.) Yes, I see that we have a few copies of that in stock. You'll find them under "Orwell" in the "Fiction" section along that wall there. The books are in alphabetical order by author's name. Sullen Frat Dude: (Scowls at me because he has to fetch it himself. Utters a long sigh. Then, with back turned, walks away.) Yeah.
Kick-Ass Lesbian Co-Worker: (Deftly picks up aforementioned copy of the Ensucklopedia, nonchalantly presses a button.)
Sound-Card Butt-Head: Heh heh. Assmunch.
Me: (Ducks beneath register, unable to repress gasps of laughter.)