I have a cold. Ergo, I am crabby. Ergo, I want to complain about something. I am convinced that all great reformers had perpetual head colds.
Where do used book dealers get off? I mean SERIOUSLY! Used car dealers don't key their name on the doors of their merchandise! Thrift shop owners don't write the price in black magic marker on the front of every piece of clothing. And yet used book dealers seem to think nothing of defacing the covers of their stock!
Here are some of my biggest pet peeves:
1. Stickers that don't peel off easily and leave fuzzy remains and sticky adhesive patches on the covers.
Exhibit A: Does it really cost that much to get stickers that peel off?
Exhibit B: They've already got a huge sticker - couldn't they have used it to cover the barcode and forgone the marker?
3. Making a HOLE in the cover.
Exhibit C: What's the matter, guys, couldn't get your big, nasty sticker to stretch far enough? Or was it just a love affair with a hole punch?
Exhibit D: Weep with me. Just Weep.
It's not that I don't appreciate used bookstores and sellers. Believe me, on a graduate student stipend I give them a LOT of business. But does having used merchandise mean it's ok to vandalize it?
(I should qualify that not all used book dealers are offenders. Half Price Books, for example, does a pretty good job of using small, easily peel-offable stickers.)