Before I tell you my book storie(s) I though I’d first share that today is my birthday! I woke up and went to spinning class and then came home and ran intervals on our treadmill for about 3 miles before showering and going out with my old lady friend Eleanor. We just went to McDonalds, Wal-Mart and the bank and by the time we were finished with the bank it was snowing so hard and it was so cold that ice was forming on my windshield despite my wipers and defrost going on high. So we headed home and she settled in for the day with her new groceries and I came back here to snuggle up with the dog for a mid-day birthday nap! Then around 2pm I had to get up and get ready because Joe and I had dentist appointments this afternoon to fix two teeth on each of us. Joe was at 3 and I was at 4 and it was pretty easy for both of us, although Joe’s Novocaine (or whatever they use now) seems to have worn off way quicker while mine stuck around for several hours! After the dentist we went to the bar for a couple of hours and had extremely salty popcorn and several drinks with one of Joe’s coworkers and then by 8:30 we were home and settled on the couch with our traditional Friday Taco Bell supper! We watched some T.V. with supper and then thanks to the several drinks I had I fell fast asleep on the couch and Joe woke me up when it was time to go to sleep! I don’t drink often so the three vodka and cranberry drinks I had along with some kind of energy drink shot and something called rumchada that tasted like sugary cinnamon milk… I was pretty done in!
I received many nice things for my birthday. Pretty new earrings from my parent’s (which I opened and actually wore already on Thursday!) and then they also gave me birthday money and I got birthday money and gift cards from Joe’s family and a couple of other family members as well so I was very spoiled! One former coworker even sent me a cookie from online which was super nice of her since she lives across the country now!
Joe’s gift to me was entry into this years Grandma’s Marathon which is actually going to turn out to be a pretty expensive gift since it cost two entry fees (Joe is doing it with me!) and we decided to do it ‘right’ this year and instead of driving halfway really late the night before and then getting up at 3am we are going to splurge on a hotel much closer to the activities and leave earlier on Friday so we can go to the expo, pick up our packets (instead of spending $50 to have them shipped to us) and can sleep in later on Saturday morning before the race. We’re also planning on staying the night after the race so we can relax and unwind and shower in our own hotel room instead of trying to find a YMCA or other spot to shower and then leaving right away. Joe signed us up for the marathon early this morning and I actually got a confirmation email for it as his surprise to tell me we were doing it again and it took me until almost 10am before I actually read the email and got my gift. I had seen the email right away but Grandma’s sends me email all the time now and I thought it was just another junk email or reminder email and at the last minute as I was about to delete it I decided to glance and it…and I was so surprised! I don’t know what made me decide to click into it and read it but I’m glad I did!
If we feel up to it after our marathon maybe we can even see some sights around Duluth before heading home on Sunday. It should be an exciting and fun trip… I am looking forward to it since I had a lot of fun at last year’s marathon! Most of my birthday money went to buying new Brooks running shoes and a Clean water bottle that I hope is easy to keep clean because it unscrews on both the top and bottom. I’ll try that for awhile since the past couple of months I have been purchasing bottled water which is cheap only a couple of dollars for 24 – 500ml bottles but between Joe and I we can go through two big packages (48 bottles of water) in under a week and really that is pretty excessive waste to be putting into the landfill, even if we try to refill and reuse them sometimes. So this less than $10 water bottle seems like a reasonable investment!
Now… on to my title story!
It all started several months ago when somebody left a Michigan Tech library book on the counter within spilling distance of my coffee pot. An expensive ($150) book, that I then proceeded to spill coffee all over. Then fast forward through a few months to when Joe finds the book and the fact that I spilled coffee all over it and gets mad at me. Instead of returning it to the library and trying to cheat them (like some people would do!) or pay them a huge fee Joe decided to get his own copy of the book and see if the library would be willing to take the new, nice one instead.
Joe searched and searched on Amazon for a nice, but used book for two straight weeks every day checking the listings and searching for a good candidate. Finally on December 29 a book appeared under like new condition and sounded too good to be true at only around $50. He ordered it and we hoped our library would accept this book instead. When the book came Joe was looking it over and discovered that the book had a stamp across the top of the pages from a library in Greensboro. The book was immaculate and inside there was an old check out paper from 2009 and he could see the places where the bar codes were torn off. Joe thought it looked a bit fishy so he called the library and talked to one of their librarians who confirmed that their particular copy of that book had been checked out on December 28th (remember Joe had been checking book listings for two weeks straight and this book showed up on the list on December 29) but they couldn’t confirm it was their book anymore because it had no bar codes. The librarian said they usually do take the bar codes out if they are having a book sale, but that they also usually black out the library name on each book and the one on this one was still intact. The librarian said that Joe could keep the book because he technically purchased it fairly even if it was actually a stolen book but they wouldn’t even really know until at least January 18th when the book was due and it would probably take even longer, if it wasn’t returned, for them to mark it lost or missing. Joe being the kind of guy he is told the librarian that he would hang on to the book and see if they got their copy back and if not he would mail them their book back since it was so expensive and very likely was stolen from them.
Since book 2 was a possible fail Joe had to order another book to try and offer up to our library in return for the one I spilled coffee on. He found another like new book and ordered it and for a week or two we had three copies of the same book in the house. Thankfully the nicer two suffered no wounds or trauma while they were here.
If we could pick an ideal situation it would be for Michigan Tech to accept book 3 in exchange for book 1 with coffee stains and not make Joe pay a fine. Then the library in Greensboro would report getting their book back so we could sell book 2 without feeling guilty and quite probably make a profit on it! Then book 1, stains and all, would be Joe’s to keep since it is still perfectly readable but with the edges being stained from the coffee.
Now, today, Book 2 was due at it’s original Greensboro library. Joe called and it was still not checked in but not marked as lost or anything yet of course. So the jury is still out on whether we have a duplicate or whether their book was stolen and sold on Amazon. I told Joe to give me the name of the Amazon seller to post on my blog because stealing books (or anything) is not very nice but he didn’t because technically the seller may not be the stealer and/or it may be a duplicate book or have some other good reason for having been sold in perfect condition. So for now book 2 is staying safely with us.
Then during my dentist appointment Joe took off and went to our library to show them the coffee book and see if they would take book 3 in exchange for it… and of all things… the librarian said “Oh I’ve seen worse, it’s not bad” and she chose to take their original book back stains and all instead! Which was incredibly nice of them, since they could have had a totally nice, new book instead. I guess people do horrible things to books and don’t even try to come clean about it… so our coffee stains look reasonable! So now we have two nice books in our possession and there are a variety of outcomes. If Greensboro needs their book Joe will mail it back to them free of charge and just return it to them because it’s the right thing to do with something stolen. Or they may not want it back or they may get their own back and then Joe can sell that one. The other nice book Joe might decide to keep for himself if he wants, or he could sell that one too. We may end up with one book, or no books… but at least we won’t have three books anymore!