11 January 2010


It just so happens that one of my greatest peeves in life is stickers on my books. Any kind of stickers. Price tags, those yellow USED stickers, Oprah's Book Club stickers (those are the worst), anything. Hate them. You may have noticed, I'm a little particular about my reading materials. Okay, I'm particular about a bunch of things, and opinionated about almost everything, but for some reason, I cannot stand stickers on my books. As a result, the first thing I do upon roosting after a trip to the bookstore is unpack my bags and peel off whatever thing has been defacing my precious booky. (For the record, pun barely noticeable in today's media, I'm also the same way about immediately unwrapping my CD purchases. And don't even get me started on shrinkwrapped books. It's not like they have to stay fresh.)

Last week I purchased textbooks for the spring semester--which included Stickers, All Kinds. Almost all the books were used, but even worse the college I attend uses particularly odious pricing stickers the size of my hand, stickers that could have patched the Mauritania, stickers that....well, in a word, stick. Since Law and Order was on, I settled down on the floor in front of the television with a trash can, a tower of books almost as tall as a FireCat sitting on a floor, a paper towel, and the industrial size bottle of Goo-Gone. My father was amused enough to take a few pictures of this, but I shan't post them, as the shirt I am wearing is tissue-weight and my slouched posture leaves something to be desired in the body-fat-appearance category. (On the plus side, I have excellent cleavage in both shots. But I digress.) His reason for this was he wanted documentary proof of "the sadness."

Sadness? What? How could anyone be sad surrounded by that many squeaky-clean books? Even if half of them were about the Holocaust and the other half were about visuality, violence and race (hey, it's the only two classes they were offering that weren't about Thornton Wilder, and I've already taken that.) Only one lonely poetry book by Eavan Boland rounded out the group. Anyway. I embrace my nerdliness. He wasn't going to shame me with this.

And then, the next night, I found myself in the same place, polishing my multivitamin capsules one at a time.

I so wish I were kidding about this. But one of the capsules apparently exploded, split along the seam, or just gave up the gelatin ghost, and the contents oozed all over the bottle, coating all the other vitamins with gunk. This wouldn't have been a problem if it hadn't been excruciatingly foul-tasting gunk of the "making a face like a cat eating a peanut-butter sandwich" variety. And this stuff had gotten
e v e r y w h e r e . So there I was, with a little white terrycloth bar towel, carefully polishing each phyto-fucking-estrogen until it gleamed as darkly as my thoughts.

Incidentally, this particular variety of vitamins is also particularly hard to unseal from its hermetic little peel-off lid. Seriously, GNC ought to give some thought to this problem. Do they really want a bunch of women within eyeshot of perimenopause to be so frustrated with their packaging that they must resort to wielding sharp objects? I'm thinking not. But that's another post entirely.


Deirdre said...

Stickers on books irritate the crap out of me too. Does it never occur to publishers and book retailers that people actually keep and treasure their books?

Unknown said...

I realize this is an older post, but I couldn't help myself.

I've borrowed books from friends and it was ALL I COULD DO to not peel the freaking price sticker off the back of the book. I'd start to peel a corner and make myself smooth it back out as I reminded myself that my sticker loving friend is perfectly within her right to leave the annoying sticker sticking to the now sticky book. AAAHHHH! I totally understand.

Anonymous said...

Windex is great for de-sticking stickers. Shpritz a little on the offending pustule, rub it in, and wait a bit. Fingernails are usually enough to peel it away from your precious. A blowdryer on high is pretty effective as well. But not both at once :-)