Otter Musings on This Fine Thursday

IMG_2460Thursday! I know, don’t get ahead of myself. But it’s two weeks in a row.

I thought today I would clear-up confusion I’ve found some customers have and that is, who owns OCUB? That would be me. Some believe that the store is owned by another used bookstore in the area. I’m not sure why people think that but they do. Well, actually a customer recently mentioned that he felt no way could there be enough business to support more than one used bookshop in the area. Interesting thought but yes, it can. I’m of the mind, as I know many other used bookstore owners would agree with me, the more the better because then the area becomes a destination to seek out hidden gems.

Each shop has its own personality. Or rather the personality of the shop is reflective of the owner.  Sometimes I get frustrated with that thought because I’m actually a neat – everything has its place – person. I like neatness and thrive on it. So here I sit among piles of books in every direction. Boxes of books stacked somewhat neatly. Piles of books in aisles. Stacks in another. Books tucked into shelves where there is clearly no more room for them. Is this all a reflection of who I really am? I don’t think so but yet every time I make changes, rearrange shelves, etc. the next thing I know it is all right back to how it was. Ugh! Maybe it is a side of me that I have to contend with. But then I do have to remember it is just me in the store or it’s just my daughter, Hannah. We are hardly ever in the store together unless a little boy or two is with us. And believe it or not, there is a lot to do on a daily basis. I’ve tried to take days to read but I’ve got such a work ethic I can’t. Boxes come in and they must be dealt with – clean, sort, price and shelf. Books with torn jackets need to be covered in mylar. Change around shelf displays. Rearrange the window displays. There is always something.

I have to remind myself that reading is also work. After ten years you’d think I’d take time to read while I’m in the store. I have been giving myself permission because it is as important as cleaning off books, pricing them fairly and shelving. Don’t get me wrong. I do read. I keep a book in my bag, a couple downstairs in my house and another couple upstairs. And one for the store. I’ll write more on my reading obsession in another post. Now I must tackle the piles that are around my feet.

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