I promised the big, little bro (he’s younger but 6’5”) that I will take him and his girlfriend barhopping tonight. The problem with this is a.) I have no cash, b.) I have to work tomorrow, and c.) I actually derive no pleasure from barhopping. I would take them dancing, but I can guarantee any place I want to go to he’ll hate (he’s more country, I’m…not). But basically I’m having third and fourth thoughts about this because his whole goal this evening appears to be getting his older sister trashed and hangovers and customer service don’t mix.
Here’s hoping mildly tipsy and home by one will work for him because I have to work tomorrow, and then make six dozen cookies for the cookie party/ornament war I’m attending on Sunday.
But enough about me, let’s talk about you, specifically the books you may have bought for friends and family that aren’t in the most beautiful, pristine condition. Getting a book in perfect condition is pretty hard these days, they are moved from one box to another, sliding against each other and getting bashed around. Sometimes their box has a run in with a forklift or three. Sometimes they’ve been dropped by the customers or booksellers that handled it before you. All in all books take a lot of abuse, but there are some things you can do to spruce up that outer beauty.
Now everyone knows that you have to keep your books in a temperate, dry place to keep them from yellowing and curling (not to mention they should be stored away from windows), but did you realize you could use Windex to help remove cover scuffs? Just spray a little Windex on a soft towel and wipe the cover off in a circular motion. It will minimize a lot of the cover damage and remove any dirt build up (and since books are stored in warehouses there’s usually some dirt). I’ve heard you can do the same thing with pledge and other dust removal products as long as they advertise as not being too harsh on surfaces.
Bent corners and folds in dust jackets can be fixed by sandwiching the dust jacket between two cloths and using an iron on its lowest setting. The little bit of heat in combo with the pressure will take out the crinkles but you have to be careful.
Anyone else have any useful book care tips?
Other than don’t drop them, that is.
And if you haven't already, go check out the Written Nerd's Blog "New York Bookstores Need A Miracle." I agree with everything she has to say about frontline booksellers and why many people don't claim it as their life-pursuit.