Saturday, 5 December 2009

Support Your Local Bookshop II


Approached by no less than THREE v. helpful, v.polite, v. nice young members of staff at Waterstone’s bookshop in Kensington last Thursday, all of whom asked,”Can I help you?” Each with a seemingly genuine desire to be of assistance.

“No thank you,” I replied each time with a smile that was MILES away from being as v. helpful, v. polite and v. nice as each of theirs. Feeling misanthropic, I mooched out of the shop, regretting that I hadn’t given them the reply I’d wanted to. Which was:

“Help me? Help me? I’m a man in early middle age browsing in a bookshop. This is ONE of the only TWO places ON GOD’S GREEN EARTH where I require no help. The other is in a record shop. Help is what I require almost EVERY MOMENT OF THE DAY UNLESS I AM BROWSING IN A BOOKSHOP OR A RECORD SHOP. If being approached THREE TIMES suggests that I LOOK LIKE I NEED HELP EVEN HERE IN A BOOKSHOP then only the record shop is left as a safe haven of surety and self-confidence. But if I already look like I need helping the bookshop, how long before I look out of place in a record shop too? Huh? Eh? What?

Just shoot me now.

P.S. Support your local bookshop. Even if it’s not as good as Marchpane (pictured) in Cecil Court WC2 (and few bookshops are) with your continued support, maybe one day it will BECOME as good.

P.P.S. Support your local record shop, too.

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