Tuesday, March 07, 2006


An online transaction is impersonal, right? Not always. Over the weekend I received an e-mail from a customer that was more meaningful and personal than a typical face-to-face interaction with a store clerk.

He purchased a set of Dorothy Dunnett books from me on eBay and found my blog entry about the "tale of procurement" of these books: "My landlady commissioned me to find these. One of my regular tasks is to venture down into the basement with a freshly duct taped box of books that she's just finished reading and return with another box that is usually covered with dust and coming apart along the bottom edge. When Louise was working she'd bring in new titles from the outside, but after retiring she began re-reading everything she'd stowed away as a younger woman. We are now more than half way through her cache, so I might be making these purchasing expeditions more often. The last time she got me involved in book buying we came home with a collection of Ursula Le Guin novels, and as it turned out they were purchased for me...I'll be including a copy of your blog with the books when I give them to her.It's almost as if you had discovered the books for us or as if we had been at the St. Barnabas sale with you. Thanks again. I wish all of my purchases could be this gratifying."

We made the rule of three on those Dorothy Dunnett books. That is, they sold for at least three times what we paid for them. Barely. Usually books sell for MUCH more than that, but these books did not. There were a lot of highlight marks on the pages. Obviously the prior owner pored over these novels and read every page. This diminishes the "value." I could be disappointed in the final sale price but knowing that Louise will soon be reading the books is what makes them valuable.

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Blogger Mimi said...

That's so very cool!

11:21 AM  

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