How to Buy a Book on Your Lunch Break

Exercise your right to read: spend your lunch break in the book store.

Don’t take your sandwich into the book store – you will need two clean hands. Ignore the hunger pangs, signs of fatigue, dizziness and thirst. Ignore the urge to wee.

A cutthroat approach is the only approach.

Steer past the assistant in a suit standing next to alarmingly high piles of brand spanking new copies of ‘The Toe Nail Clipper’s Account: A Lost Journal by Queen Victoria’s Pedicurist’.  A feisty, dismissive hand movement at his initial intake of breath as you scurry passed is quite acceptable.

Don’t make eye contact with the man with a question on his face hovering around the New Fiction and Oenology intersection.

Don’t help the little old lady – who is no taller than an gnome – reach the top shelf for a book entitled: ‘How To Become A Naturist’ – it’s wrong in so many ways ­– point her instead to books on understanding eccentricity.

Don’t stop to help her from beneath the entire naturist section if the shelf topples on her head due to her defiance of your advice.

Don’t feel bad about it.

Ignore the urge to wee.

Don’t be tempted to strive for something different to adorn your bookshelf. Locate your section. Don’t be taken in by gaudy covers or bawdy displays. Never try an author whose name begins with the letters Z or X, or worse Z and X.

Look for the ‘It’ book – there is only one book: the one that everyone is reading; the one that you already know the ending to because it’s all the rage with tweeters, the subject of emails and because there’s already a film about it.

If the book doesn’t have a black cover and a splash of red imagery on the front put it down at once.

Since it’s better not to judge a book by its cover, read only a page from the middle section to check you have the correct one.

Never chose large print, invest in binoculars instead.

Ignore the urge to wee.

Upon finding your book, plan your route to the tills wisely.

Beware of crowds – it is impossible to say if ‘The Toe Nail Clipper’s Account: A Lost Journal by Queen Victoria’s Pedicurist’ has become an over lunch break success so proceed with caution.

Adopt a ninja’s dexterity; use a periscope if you have one.

Cut in front of multi book buyers, people desperately searching for cash and those with returns.

Ignore the urge to wee.  Jig if you have to.

Think ahead, it’s all about your image; look eco-friendly, refuse the carrier. Invest in something that will draw attention to you on the train. There’s a lovely wide-brimmed hat in the shop next door — a hat and book combo – perfect! The hat will frustrate the corner-of-the-eye and over-shoulder readers breathing down your neck on the train.

Nip next door, buy the hat.

Thirstily, jig back to work, feeling slightly dizzy, yet quite elated with your new book and hat.



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