Monthly Archives: May 2009

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I started a new job last week in a suburb called Nunawading and came across this little piece of Nunawading that elicited both promise and despair —  McLeods Books.

I stepped out of the railway station, and this little gem stared at me from across Station Street, beckoning like a houri to the afterlife (non-conglomerated bookstores tend to affect me that way).

The display window should have given me a hint, but I thought the owner may just be creativity impaired.(If you’re any kind of bibliophile like I am, the following images can be very disturbing.)

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No premonition from that whatsoever, but I walked in. Assailed by the scent of old paper and ink, I was speechless from the sight.

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There was no order, no rhyme or reason to how the books had been shelved. Dostoevsky sat next to Nora Roberts. Historical tomes were piled next to a shelf of erotica. Books tumbled like the Tower of Babel felled by a mysterious wind.

And then the clincher — an old man, ancient as the Diamond Sutra, and no doubt the owner of the shop, sitting on a creaking chair at a creepy nook amidst this sea of books doing what? No prizes for guessing — WATCHING AFTERNOON TELEVISION. 😐

Oh, I could have cried then.

Instead I disappear to some other obscure cranny to click these pictures.

On my way out, I notice a sign by the door stating “We are not buying any more books unless a sale of $10 or more”. There’s a good sales tactic.

I wondered if I could ask him to hire me to revamp McLeods. I’d take crappy pay and overtime work hours for that job any day.

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