Tuesday, September 25, 2012


Okay.  If you walk into a store five minutes before closing time and the employees are nice to you, you should know they're only faking it.  I know.  They should be happy for your business.  And yeah.  The Customer is King.  But in their hearts they are secretly wishing you had never been been born, because you are (in all likelihood) preventing them from getting home in time to watch the season premiere of CASTLE.

Last night at the store, Sally and I got a phone call from someone who said HE'D BE RIGHT THERE.  This was at 8:45, which did not make us happy.  What if he showed up after nine?  Would he expect us to still be there?  Should we still be there?  The answer is yeah, we probably would have waited--which is why we were relieved when he showed up minutes before closing time and headed straight for the shelves.  He was a man on a mission.  We wouldn't have to wait around for long, because he knew precisely what he wanted--which turned out to be THE TWO TOWERS by Tolkien.

I recognized the look on his face.  He had discovered LOTR, and he could not wait until morning to resume his adventures in Middle Earth.  The same thing happened to me when I was sixteen on a sunny summer afternoon in southern California.  I picked up THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING and (much to my surprise) tumbled headlong into its pages.

I envied the customer and wished I could be taking that journey for the first time all over again.


Alyosha said...

Oh man, those books are so good. If valentine was a boy, we woul have named him Reuel, after my grandpa, but also secretly after Tolkien. Just like Valentine is secretly named after Valentine Wiggin. :)

radagast said...

Yes, I miss my pre-Peter Jackson experiences in Middle-Earth. The films were great, okay, but I do wish I could remember how I used to picture hobbits and elves and Elrond's house and that little place just around the corner next to the stream. I've lost my own directorial vision. Oh well. We still have Tom Bombadil, appropriately untouched by all the recent hoopla.

shelley said...

You know I love Tolkien. I also know he's the 'Father of Fantasy,' but nothing has ever come close in that realm. Sometimes I pick up a huge fantasy tome and hope for an LOTR experience, and I am always let down. I think its because his world is just so rich and believable, like it truly is the mythology of the North.

James said...

I have always felt left out of the LOTR world. I know they are supposed to be great, and I want to be able to love the books, but for some reason, Middle Earth never spoke to me. Maybe I will try again sometime. I do appreciate, however, that anytime a book, or series of books, can encapsulate you in its world, something special is going on. Its why I read. Way to be of service to the customer, Ann, and I hope he enjoys books the you have.

Emily said...

This was lovely.