Thursday, August 31, 2006

Welcome to September! The new month brings big changes to this bookstore. Janis has flown to Europe where she will spend the next year teaching English to French kids somewhere down in the south of France near Montpellier, just a few miles from all the places where Picasso lived and Gerald and Sarah Murphy invented being really cool! Gertrude Stein lived down that way, too, only many miles to the east, closer to the Swiss and Italian borders. Janis is all the way west of there, just a short train ride from Barcelona. All of these place and people names are indirect literary illusions to books which we can sell to you or recommend that you buy from another store which has been smart enough to stock them in advance of this posting!
Although the actual person, Janis herself, is probably irreplaceable, the space she once occupied, or part of it, is now taken up by Gabe, our new two days a week major domo who will sell, buy, organize and schmooze away at your command. Gabe is a writer,editor,actor, and an experienced bouquiniste, having worked for another Chicago bookstore which has not paid for naming rights in this blog. He has come to us highly recommended by many old pals through an odd chain of coincidental small world degrees of separation.
Kirk Robinson, who is married to Mrs. Robinson, stays on in his own evolving time slots. He teaches full time at the U of Illinois in Chicago, but since he lives upstairs of the store, has worked at New York's Strand Bookstore ( they can send promotional considerations via the Bridgeview Bank ), and is such a good dresser, our board has advised that he be kept on at almost any cost.
A new shipment of books in many languages has just arrived and will be followed by another as soon as the donor gives us a call. There are classics in French, German ( Gothic type and modern ), and Italian. As always, classic literature, famous books, and well known authors arrive every day. We have two books signed by the Arizona golfing great, Dan Quayle,


Janis said...

Hey, I'm "probably" irreplaceable? I thought it was 'out of sight, out of reach of Jim's sarcasm...' but apparently, I was wrong.

Oh well, it makes me feel like I'm not thousands of miles away. Not that I really needed that yet... but I'm sure it will come in handy someday.

On another note, while you plugged Sarah and Gerald Murphy and Picasso who was in love with Sarah (as was Hemmingway), you didn't plug the amazing book about them that I'm sure you have hidden back in the biography stacks. So, I'm going to plug it for you and while I'm at it, I'm going to offer whomever finds it 1 euro (which kicks the dollar's butt, especially in Ireland) because I couldn't find it last week (and I had a knack for finding just about anything in the store). The book's title is When We Were Young. Start digging!

Hi to Mr. and Mrs. Robinson and lovely little Audrey Robinson. I'm sorry we never brunched. I had really been looking forward to that. Can we email instead? Jim will give my address to you if you ask him kindly.

Hi also to Gabe. So glad you got the job! It's the best one I ever had (apart from teaching which can't really be compared to any other jobs) so I'm sure you'll really enjoy it. There's a green journal on the counter back there somewhere and it would be swell if you'd write in to keep up a tradition and to amuse Jim. Ask him to tell you the story about that journal someday. Maybe he'll even post the story... And tell your roommate hi for me. I'm sorry I didn't get to say goodbye to him.

C'est tout pour maintenant. I must go drink guinness with the lads... and then read some Joyce until I close me eyes.

Jim Mall said...

Joyce should close your eyes in a hurry, unless the Guiness has done the job first.
The Murphy book is probably titled something more like They Were All So Young, but I think that I sold it a couple of weeks ago. Author is Amanda (? ) Vaill ( ? )
You should also all read Picasso and Dora by James Lord, which has been out of stock for two years. Much more ado about the south of France.
Hemingway, one M.
Papa, two Ps.
Jim, two Ls.

Dick sez:
Drink in moderation
eat to satiation
love with titillation
have a good vacation.

Jim Mall said...

Footnote: Everybody Was So Young by Amanda Vaill, available in paper ("wraps") or cloth ("boards"). Probably still in print in one or both versions, but this store is currently out of it, as we used to say. In fact, on the day of this posting, Sunday September 3, we seem to be out of everything. It's difficult to walk through the store due to our excess of inventory, and yet dozens of would-be customers came in today looking for a book that was out of stock, or of which we had never heard, or which we would never carry short of a court order ( don't ask ).
I promise to want to have the book you're looking for next time you come in, except for that court-ordered category.