In the book shop the other day when I offered a customer a (free) book mark, she said, ‘Thank you, I will take one because whenever I need it I can never find one.’
We had a little conversation – as you do – about disappearing bookmarks (I too seem to loose them by the bucket full) when my colleague in the shop joined in and said, ‘Of course you could always turn down the corner of a page instead.’
I stared at the lovely lady who I’ve now been working with for about six months. I was speechless; she was a self-confessed book lover, we had both stood in the shop unashamedly stroking the spine of a beloved novel, or a newly published one by an admired author. And here she was willing to do the most despicable thing to such a piece of art – spoil it by folding its pages!
When I tried to ask how she could treat a book like this, she said she thought it was nice to see a book had been read and loved – like an old doll.
Half an hour later the poor customer who’d been sucked into the ‘should one fold or not’ -conversation, said she really had to go as she had things to do.
‘I still can’t believe it,’ I muttered. In our household folding the pages of books is a sackable offence, easily reasonable cause for divorce. Comparable to using a buttery knife to scoop out jam or marmalade out of a jar, thereby leaving an ugly smear inside it. (What’s wrong with using a clean spoon?)
Ok, I may be a little control freaky and weird.
What do you think? Do you fold the top of a page if you don’t have a bookmark? (I don’t want to know about your jam jar habits…)