Monday, February 28, 2011

2011 Book Sale Part 1: Remove Those Chairs!

The large book sale was on Friday.  There was a lot of negativity this year, so much so that it largely overshadowed my positive feelings about my finds.  This post covers the bad part only.

I delayed leaving for the sale for at least an hour so I would not be in the middle of the clique.  I was still too close to them.  Next year, I think I might show up even later just to keep further away from these snobbish, entitled people who have a bad attitude and think they run the sale.  On the other hand, I'll probably show up at the same time and deal with it. 

Usually, the line is cheery.  One person in particular, a member of the clique, was cranky and rude.  Early on, two people walked up to the open door.  I was not watching as they approached, but I strongly suspect that they just wanted to look through the open door.  Everyone likes to get a peek through the windows.  Cranky was standing near the door.  He broke off his conversation and snapped at them, telling them that the sale hadn't started and that they couldn't go in.  They turned and walked off without a word.  He then snapped that he will strangle anyone who tries to cut in front of him.

Later, Cranky got upset about some empty chairs.  What a few people did was show up around 8 to 10 AM and place their chairs in line.  They then left and planned to show up towards 3 to 4 PM.  This is cheating, make no mistake, but I have the opinion that if only a few people are skirting the rules, then it is best to keep the peace and not ruin the environment for everyone.  In life, we have to deal with the cheaters and slackers, and as long as they are not causing a big problem, it is best just to let them be.  I feel like people who cheat do get what they deserve, or at least, don't get as far ahead as they think they are getting.

By the way, these same people left the chairs last year and showed up later with no one saying anything.  The problem this year was that the chairs were next to Cranky.  Uh-oh.  He decided to remove the chairs and make a big production of having all of us move forward to fill the gap up tightly.  Oh, dear.  I knew what was going to happen.

A couple of hours later, the first person returned and found his chairs against the wall.  He made some comments about it and took his chairs over to where he had been. Cranky confronted him and an argument began.  Someone pulled a few volunteers outside.  They didn't want to intervene.  One volunteer commented that if we were going to act like children in the line then the rules needed to be changed.

I couldn't hear exactly what transpired, and I am actually not certain whether the person was able to get back in line.  Around an hour later, the other two people whose chairs were removed showed back up.  They wisely did not try to get back in line.  They had a private conversation, which I was able to partially hear since I was only a few feet away.  They decided to go elsewhere; I assume to the end of the line.

Meanwhile, a couple of women had gotten really riled up by talking to Cranky.  They were indignant over an empty chair in the line behind them.  Behind the empty chair and apparently not connected to the empty chair were two boxes. 

I hate hypocrites.  The chair was an abomination and needed to be removed, since that person was not known to the clique.  The boxes, however, were fine, because the boxes belonged to a man who was not with a member of the clique but was a friend of a member of the clique.  The chair was removed, but the boxes remained.  When the man who left the boxes showed up around five hours after he left them, everything was just peachy.

Do you see the hypocrisy?  It's okay if they do it, but no one else can do it.

I also want to point out that long before the negativity, Cranky left to get his friends some tacos.  He went to another part of the city and was gone around an hour.  If it is okay to be gone an hour, why not two?  What about three, four, or five?   To what degree does the absence become a violation?  I agree that leaving an empty chair for eight hours is completely wrong and breaking the rules, but what about one or two hours?  I can tell you that I would not feel comfortable leaving for an hour. 

I almost hope that next year the volunteers post a sign stating that if someone leaves the line for more than 10 minutes, out they go.  It would serve them right.  No tacos!

Shortly after all of this and around 1 1/2 hours before the sale began, someone sent me an email chastising me for "bragging" about my "eBay prowess."  That capped it off and made me sulk and fume for those last 1 1/2 hours in line.  All I was doing was stating that people who are seeking a certain book will notice it on eBay without someone needing to tell the entire collecting community about it, as though interested members of the collecting community are incapable of spotting it.

My next post will be happier.  I promise.


Amanda said...

Sorry you had such a rough time. Hope there were some good things that happened there too.

Best Wishes,

Jenn said...

Wow, those people sure do sound cranky and rude! I used to go to some library sales near me when I was in TX--in Lubbock and Amarillo. Lubbock's was much better for finding series books. And the people that got to the front of those lines--mostly the same every year, were pretty nice people. At the Lubbock one, we had to get there about 5 or 6 in the morning to get to the front and sometimes it was cold, so often the first of us would go put our chairs up and then go back to our cars--we were parked about 20 feet away if that for an hour or two until the sun came up and it started to warm up a bit, and then we'd go back. No one else was there anyhow by that time. Most of the people that got their first were book dealers of some sort. The VNSA sale out here in Phoenix--even if I show up at 3am, there's usually about 500 people ahead of me in line and then the sale usually cuts us off shortly after I get inside for crowd control. Thousands show up. It's insane! Hope you found lots of goodies--can't wait to hear about your finds!


Miranda said...

Where was this book sale?

Jennifer said...

I purposefully left out the location due to the nature of my comments. Go to my profile page to see where I live. That will answer the question.

There was another book sale in the second largest city in this state during this weekend. I always miss it because I can't go to both sales.