The library book sale is my “Black Friday.” The day I anxiously await each spring and fall. The night before the sale, I take out the money I plan to spend and set out the clothes and shoes that will comfortably allow me to work, shop and, if need be, crawl under tables.
That night, I make sure to get a full eight hours sleep, so that Grouchy Stacy will not ruin the best day of my year.
In the morning, I make sure to sweep the hair into a tight pony so that it won’t fall in my face as I mill through thousands of books. Next, I perform 20 toe touches, a handful of sideways bends and 10-15 lunges, a routine I will repeat throughout the day to make sure that I’ll be in top form for the sale.
Then, I eat a good solid breakfast because I know that dinner time will come late on this day.
In the spring, I always pay my membership dues so that I can go right into the fall sale. Some people like to line up early and wait on the lobby steps for the sale, but by this time in my life, I am very aware of my weaknesses and know there is a possibility that I will get so anxious to shop that I will run people over in my exuberance. So I hang back in my office until 5 minutes or so have gone by, then I make my move.
Having grabbed my big book bag, I head to the hobby section to look for old books on little known and obsolete hobbies. Next to that, I check for old-fashioned books about the life of women—1950s cosmetology books, hygiene from the 1940s, etc. I end this section with 1950s decorating books and anything from the 70s about taking care of dogs. The Friends have all of the books very well sorted so I can move from subject to subject with ease, finding all of my golden oldies while leaving the bestsellers and new/newer material to others.
From there I move on to look for fiction books with amazing paper covers, the LPs—especially anything having to do with Lawrence Welk, and then I go to the children’s section to look for books with super cute illustrations. Once I have my fill, I look for the husband who always has a massive stack of sci fi, home improvement and electronics books.
We sit on the back steps looking through our books to make sure we have everything we want and that we need what we have. Sometimes, I find myself trying to repurchase books that I donated myself. I try to make myself put those back because I know I had a reason to let them go when I was not in a shopping frenzy.
After we pay and go home, we spend a silent hour ooh’ing and aw’ing over what we’ve bought.
Last, since I am usually at the booksale on Sunday anyway to help with removing books, we attend one more time for the $1 bag sale. I especially like this day because even though the books are super cheap, there are always a several I am on the fence about. On $1 bag day, if the books I was uncertain about before are still there, then I know they were meant to be mine!
That Sunday night, I find places on my shelves for all my new treasures and remove the books that I will be donating to the library’s next sale, and then I eagerly wait six more months when I can repeat my routine all over again!