Monday, July 18, 2005

Scenes from a Bookstore

Nearly midnight, and the place was packed.

When I arrived at Barnes & Noble just before midnight Friday night, I was lucky to get a parking space.  The place was packed, inside and out! The occasion: the penultimate Harry Potter midnight book party.

I think that's the St. Michael's headmaster talking to the young witch.

The age range in the store was about six to sixty, literally.  I'm not certain, but I think that may be Patrick Brown, Headmaster of St. Michael's Parish Day School, talking to the young witch.  If so, I quite didn't recognize him out of context. Good for him, though, if it is he.  I know that some people don't agree, but these books are not incompatible with Christianity.

The way my local B&N set it up this time, the procedure was to 1) preorder the book, 2) check in at a table to be marked off on their list and to pick up a color-coded index card, and 3) wait for your group to be called.  Arriving as late as I did, I was in one of the last groups, Green 15.   The great thing about this system was that customers could then wander the store for hours while they waited for their turn, rather than navigating the store in a languid snake of a line.

Not all of the HP merchandise I saw was for sale.

Some people carried in their own Harry Potter merchandise, such as this backpack.  Others loaded up on HP giveaways, such as these green bracelets with the book's release date on them.

I never did catch up with Hagrid, Dumbledore, or whoever the woman with orange hair was supposed to be.

I never caught up with Hagrid, who kept calling, "Fluffy!  Fluffy!" There was no sign of the two-headed monster dog.  I don't know who the woman with the orange hair was supposed to be--surely not Molly Weasley!  I never got a photo of Dumbledore at all.  Shame, that.

Reading is alive and well, I'm happy to say.  What else are you going to do inB&N for two hours?

I'm pleased to say that reading is alive and well in 21st Century America.  Then again, what else is there to do in a bookstore at midnight?  All the tables were full in the cafe, and the line for coffee and sweets was very long. 

Myself, I chose a book by Patricia C. Wrede, but ultimately put it back because part of the HP line procedure involved standing outside for a while.  I'll buy it later.

Gilderoy Lockhart greets his public, including a fan of the Weird Sisters.

The guy who played Gilderoy Lockhart seemed to enjoy himself.  Note that one of the fans has a shirt for the Weird Sisters, a fictional band from the books.

Adults crowd the kids' section without shame.

I'm glad to see I'm not the only adult who likes kids' books!

With all the regular seating in use, most people sat on the floor.  This woman sat on books instead.

Most people either wandered around or found a book and a spot on the floor to sit and read it.  This woman sat on some books instead.  As far as I know, nobody bothered her about it.

I got my HP book at about 1:30 AM, along with a promo poster  and a lightning bolt temporary tattoo.  I already had the green bracelet by then, and skipped the toy glasses. When I finally went to bed at 7:15 AM, I still had a lot of reading still to do.  I was up again at 11:45 AM, and finished by book at 1:00 AM.  (I'm not a fast reader.)  Today I took a long nap to make up for that lost sleep.


Update on My Other Blogs

I spent hours today trying to fix a glitch in my template for Messages from Mâvarin, which forced the body of my most recent posting below the bottom of the sidebar.  I ended up customizing a different template.  It's better, but not good--the main column is too narrow, and (along with the sidebar) is flush left instead of centered on the page.  Anyone out there know how to fix  my latest problem?  I'm pretty good with HTML, but not with style sheets, scripts, etc.

Paul Little found a fun meme in which you use Google to translate song lyrics into other languages and back to English, à la Twain's jumping frog.  The object of the game is to figure out what song it is.  I played along in my LiveJournal



shellys555 said...

To change the width, you need to widen the whole content section, then you can widen the post section and fiddle with it in relation to the sidebar, which is why preview is so useful in Blogger. Unfortunately, it's a bit different in each of their templates as to what everything is called. I'd have to take a look at that template to be able to tell you where to add pixels. It's not one I use. I mostly use Minima and to a lesser extent, I've played with Rounders.

shellys555 said...

In addition, re: location, you might need to double check the float command for the section with the posts. I'll look at that template tonight. Maybe you can email me a copy of your customized version so I can fiddle with it. I have a couple of Blogger blogs for just that reason, to experiment.

happinessdreams said...

Great pics!
I was never into the Harry Potter thing. But I heard something about the 7th book being the last so I have this huge urge to find out what happens with Harry so I'm reading book 1.

ryanagi said...

LOL It looks like you and I spent the evening together...almost.