A great windfall!

So I swore, on my rather spotty honor, that I would buy no more books until I had read at least half of the ones on my list, and indeed I have not.

I have, however, acquired another six boxes.

Lately I’ve been keeping an eye on the “free” section of craigslist to collect furniture for our house, and then yesterday evening an offer popped up of “Books – Religion, Philosophy, Ethics, Culture, Language, Literature.”

“OoooOOOoooh!” I said.

No,” my roommate said.

At 11 AM this morning I send her a text message: “You’re going to kill me, but just remember, it was ALL FREE.”

Her: “::headdesk:: You got the books.”

What do you take me for? Of course I got the books.

Turns out it was this (very handsome) Russian guy who’d been a professor at one of the local colleges, and kept ten boxes of “his favorites” but still had another six to get rid of. I won the books by being bookishly enthusiastic and promising that I’d find homes even for the ones I didn’t want, that they weren’t just going to go in the dumpster.

And there were a lot, easily the majority, that I’m not interested in reading, because it turns out that he was a comparative religion professor and the books are weighted heavily in favor of Christian theology, but even though I’m not into that sort of thing, I spent long enough working at Half Price Books to know that plenty of other people are. I used to do this for a living, assessing book collections just like this one, and a quick glance told me that a number of these books were probably going for a quite a lot.


I’m about halfway done sorting them, and I’ve almost filled up a xerox box of the ones I’m going to try to sell online. The highest dollar book so far is selling for $95, followed by a couple that are $60+, and a handful in the $30-$40 range.

Life is suddenly behaving like World of Warcraft, in that people will pay me for things that I picked up off the ground.

11 thoughts on “A great windfall!

  1. Excellent work! You have made the world a better place by use of your skilled and experienced labor, which like reading and becoming more educated is a very good use of your time, especially since converting that time into money in a more steady 9-5 sort of job isn’t easy at the moment.

    It’s funny to think that in a few years books like these will probably all be electronic, the way music is, and people will pass copies around and delete copies they don’t want without the slightest thought. And your roommate won’t ever know or care when you get enough more that it would fill six boxes.

  2. Speaking of your rather spotty honor, your other LJ account promised a story about a certain redhead and has not yet delivered. I know writing something down while it’s still fresh in your memory can be boring, but it’ll likely dredge up memories that were starting to fade and will be fun to recall, it’ll be great fun for us to read, and it’ll be great fun for you to re-read some day years from now.

    Also speaking of your rather spotty honor, I think several of your recent few entries on both your accounts have a few questions from your fans that you haven’t answered yet, although I believe you have answered all of mine. I think the list of replies to all your posts, sorted by most recent first, shows up on the “home” LJ page.

  3. I don’t think so — the reason why these books are worth so much is because they’re old enough and obscure enough that they’re not in ebook format and possibly never will be.

    The rest of ‘em, yeah, I agree with you though.

  4. Yesss, it was of course much on my mind, that I needed to provide the coda to my Booty Call in Las Vegas, but the problem is… there were no problems. Stories are interesting and funny when the unexpected happens, but the Vegas trip went pretty much exactly as I’d expected/hoped it would — we enjoyed a lot of sex. :D

    I’ll write up something about it though, on my spotty honor.

  5. Well…. yes and no. There are plenty of books that people want to own just for owning’s sake, but there are also books where they legit want the information inside it, but it’s a very niche subject that’s had all of three books written about it in the history of ever, and all three were pre-1950, or whatever. Think of it more like, the only way to watch [some particular movie] is to track down one of 500 extant film reels.

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