Sunday, July 03, 2005

You Can Have Too Many Books

Here are some signs that you have too many books:

  • Forgetting what you own
So for the last reference class last semester the topic was fun or offbeat reference books. And one of the items handed around was the 1979 edition of Trader Vic's Bartender's Guide. Now, for a girl who has maybe 10 drinks a year, I am mad for cocktails. Yes, it is always 1955 at my house. Or maybe 1995. So there were a bunch of drinks I'd like to make, notably an Aunt Agatha (gotta have that recipe handy for breaking out the Wodehouse) and I made a note to try and track down a copy to buy.

Fast forward one month. I am emptying a box of books from the attic stash and what do I see? The 1972 edition (with dustjacket) of Trader Vic's Bartender's Guide. It's a larger volume than the library book and has the recipe I was looking for.

This scenario has been repeated with a variety of books, notably Persuasion (2 copies), Grimm's Fairy Tales (complete and unabridged is the only kind I buy, and I've got two copies that I know of and suspect there are more in the attic) and a great YA book called Midnight Hour Encores (purchased again and again and again.....)

  • Not being able to access the books (or information)
So I had this little patch on my calf, an irregular spot with a reddish border and more normal looking skin within. I googled ringworm images and figured that's what it might be. Problem was, I was going out of town and couldn't work in a trip to Dr. Julie for at least 10 days (I was going to SLA, the pipe saga, etc). What to do?

Well, I remembered that in one of the Judy Bolton mysteries she had ringworm. And since those novels were mostly written before the advent of antibiotics and antifungals, she bathed her ringworm spot in boric acid or hydrogen peroxide. Something like that. But I couldn't remember which book this happened in and the books are located in at least three different spots. Oh well.

The patch seems to have gone away on its own, but the lesson is that if you can't find what you need informationwise, it's useless. This is how treasures get lost, people!

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