Pack Rat doesn’t want to work, we just want to read our books all day
I have a sickness in my brain, there’s no other way around it. Why else would I go to a used book sale when I am actively engaged in the painful, on-going process of ridding myself of the main piles of books cluttering up my tiny apartment? Well, I guess the fact that library book sales are THE go-to event for super amazing deals on great reads could factor in. But I have a sickness, none the less.
But how could I pass this sale up? If library sales in general are the bee’s knees, then this one (which happens every year in the town of Mansfield, CT) is the dog’s bollocks of great deals. I got a handful of goodies for only $2.50. $2.50! I can’t even get a pretzel for $2.50 these days. Now, before you judge me and my Pack Rat ways, lets look at my haul, shall we?
First up, classic naturalist fiction The Country of the Pointed Firs by Sarah Orne Jewett. I luv this book, with its quiet descriptions of the sleepy little seaside town in Maine. It is so deeply soul soothing, its like a literary cup of tea. I somehow lost my original copy (the shame!), so I was thrilled to find this retro-looking cover. Plus, none of my insipid undergrad notes and half-hearted highlighting muck up this text, unlike the lost copy. Bonus.
Next, In the Skin of a Lion by Michael Ondaatje, which I have yet to read. I’ve never seen The English Patient the movie, but the book was surprisingly intriguing with exotic locales and mixes of traditional story telling and stream of consciousness rambling that was balanced enough to serve the story instead of hurting it, which can’t be said for a lot of “experimental” fiction. I expect more of the same in this tale of Toronto immigrant workers in the 1920s. Also to note: if it’s good enough for Maxine Hong Kingston then it’s good enough for me (yay Warrior Women!)
I also snagged the epic poem about a cockroach and a cat in her ninth life, Archy and Mehitabel, on my dad’s recommendation. I’m not typically a poem kinda gal, but this is categorized under humor and the pen and ink illustrations struck a chord with my comic book loving heart. Plus, I always like to buy books with inscriptions in them, and someone wrote in this copy, “For Mary and Bill (P.S. I know Mary, I’m not Irish–But I am–to quote Popeye: ‘I yam what I yam’) Lee.”
And, because as we all know, I’m a DIY dork, I grabbed Sheetrock & Shellac, a Connecticut (CT Represent!) homeowner’s memoir into his foray with DIY home projects. This will probably not be the kind of book I can talk about at cocktail parties, unlike the other three, but who the hell goes to cocktail parties in a PBR economy anyway? Sheee-it.
And finally (and this is the one that I couldn’t wait to share), I happened to glance at the “travel” table as I wandered around the room, and I found this distinctly un-travel related Chinese/English design magazine that I’m totally grokking out about. It’s called Zing. My issue is from back in September 2006, but it’s still in print and can be found online at xintiandi.com (not to be confused with Zing magazine which is something different, apparently). I managed to hook the Fashion Issue (I love the extra added touch of the pink, fabric “The Fashion Issue” tag sticking out of the binding), and it’s chock a block with cool designs, modern layouts, and interesting articles on a variety of artists, crafters, and designers. Plus– super, uber, double, mega bonus–it’s in both Chinese and English. And I would have bought it just for the pretty pictures. The current issue online features vibrant photos–both expansive and intimate, as well as intriguing articles about artists and their projects, like Lindley Warren’s photo project, The Ones we Love. I’m not quite sure yet how I can get my hands on another physical copy, but if I find out I’ll let you guys know. Until then, we should both keep Zing, and its stream-lined urban sophistication on our radar. Check out some pics below.