Saturday, August 15, 2015

Problem/Solution: Permanent Stickers On Book-Jackets

During a recent foray into the States, I spotted some remaindered books whose prices were, despite the eroded state of our Canuck-Bucks, too good to pass up.

So far so good. However, there seems to be something in the national character of the US that insists on labeling the dust-jackets of remainders with permanent stickers. I tried all the usual tricks of the trade, including applying lighter fluid to the glue. This used to be a sure-fire (giggle) last resort that always did the trick. Today's glue is sterner stuff, alas, and just smears out.

In the case of the E.L. Doctorow title, I had a difficult decision to make: keep the now-gummy dust-jacket, or discard it and read the naked hard-cover? I often opt for the latter, but this meant carrying around an overly-somber pitch-black book. Who wants to read that? On the other hand, who wants to read a gummy-covered book that picks up fingerprints, lint and cat hair?

As I pondered my options I recalled an older gentleman who used to audit several of my university philosophy courses. He fastidiously papered over every one of his textbooks, using butcher's paper -- even the Penguin paperbacks. Inspired, I now retrieved some paper grocery bags, a pair of scissors and a Sharpie and got to work.

Et viola! I now possess a book with a cover that entices (well ... it entices me, at least).

Most gratifying of all, I've replaced the pandemonious puffery of his peers with a little of my own. Everybody wins!


paul bowman said...

Forgive me, I don’t mean to sound harsh — but this is totally something I would do.

Darrell Reimer said...

"Harsh"? The more the merrier, I say!