Wednesday, May 9, 2012

McLeod's Bookstore, Basement Edition.

Here is McLeod's Bookshop again - the biggest firetrap in Vancouver, literary edition.  It is the most bookish bookstore I've ever been into, and comes complete with a crotchety bookstore-keeper, who sits behind an old wooden desk in the center of the maze on the upper floor and snarls when you ask for a price-check or worse, and cheekily, approach him with a title search.
            There's something about a really bookish used bookstore that inspires presumptions of magical powers in the proprietor.  And the worser and more impenetrable and zoo-ish and Escher-esque  the interior of the shop, the harder you presume an inverse relationship between the crumbling chaos and a level of arcane omnipotence on his  part - of course he knows the name and location of every single book!
            In revenge, he will, entirely fallaciously, direct you to the basement, where the books are stacked two-and-a-half-thousand to the cubic meter, in dusty towers as tall as you are.  There are handwritten subject catalogues pinned to pointing to the bottoms of  the stacks.  The lights are dim and the air is close and uncomfortably warm.  One stray spark off of the ancient polyester carpet underneath your feet and the whole place would go up like a bomb. 
            You flee for the dusty daylight of upstairs, and leave in determination, intending to return directly with a fire-proof suit and a scuba tank full of sensible ventilation in case of crisis.  You'd gotten almost lost down there, and in the warren of obscure academic subjects, you'd scarcely made it past the letter B.

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