Things my coworkers (and my professor) gave me

There are two reliable reactions to telling someone you collect books.

Reaction 1: “That’s so……”

Reaction 2: “That’s so cool!!”

People with the first reaction are generally well-adjusted and normal. People with the second reaction are archivists and librarians. There is crossover — certainly some librarians are well-adjusted — but for the most part it is the people who work with/around books and historical detritus all day who are all in when they find out that you’ve spent a not-inconsiderable sum on trade paperbacks.

On a staff development day a couple of years ago, we were told to say something interesting our ourselves or something that people may not know about us as introduction. I floundered for a bit and then said I’d read To Kill A Mockingbird a bunch of times and oh yeah, I guess I collected copies of the book too?

“That’s so cool!”


So this week’s post is: Things My Coworkers Gave Me After They Found Out I Collected Copies of To Kill A Mockingbird. I am always so pleased when people see TKAM paraphernalia and think of me.

First is a bumper sticker from Jessica!

What would Scout do?

WWSD? The bumper sticker comes from Bookshop Santa Cruz, an independent bookstore in downtown Santa Cruz, CA. I’ve never been, but it’s on my list of places to go next time I’m in Santa Cruz. I love this bumper sticker. What would Scout do? I spend a lot of time wondering this. She would probably get offended and punch someone.

Thanks Jessica!

Second: program planning/activity sheets for an adult program for the release of Go Set A Watchman from Melissa!

Books down and bottoms up!

Yes! Books and drinks! Best combination! Melissa got it at American Library Association’s annual conference in 2015 and saved it for me. It’s about 25% promo for Go Set A Watchman and 75% promo for Tim Federle’s Tequila Mockingbird, a literary cocktail book. Tim Federle is an author who writes cocktail recipe books based on movies and literature and YA/middle grade novels about gay teenagers who love the performing arts. Tequila Mockingbird was a clue on Jeopardy and Judy Blume tweeted him about it. I want Judy Blume to tweet me; Tim Federle is living his best life. I’ve been meaning to pick up Better Nate Than Ever for months.

The program packet has some great fun stuff in it like coasters, word searches, trivia questions, and crossword puzzles. It also has activity suggestions like having people come up with literary puns (winner gets a free drink) and do dramatic readings of Atticus’ closing argument (there are no winners, presumably, since Atticus LOST). Also this:

Tequila Mockingbird cocktail recipe

Sir, you disgust me.

Go Get A Scotch, Man, looks a bit better:

Go get a scotch, man cocktail recipe

I could drink that. I could drink a lot of that. There are also recipes in the packet for “The Sound and the Slurry” and “The Cooler Purple” both of which also do not look awful.

Thanks Melissa!

And because the world is full of happy coincidences, look what I found and bought in a bookstore today!

Tequila Mockingbird by Tim Federle

My very own copy of Tequila Mockingbird! I am going to make so many high-brow drinks. Literary cocktail party, anyone?

Since I’m on the topic of people giving me things for collections, I want to take a quick detour. If I didn’t collect TKAM, I would collect Paradise Lost. I think I’ve only read it one and a half times straight through, but I love reading excerpts from it. One of my favorite papers I wrote in college was an essay on what Philip Pullman cribbed from Paradise Lost for His Dark Materials. (He cribbed a lot.) One of my favorite projects was hand-binding a pocket-sized Book I for class. (I was going to try to do all twelve books, but was wisely talked out of it.) Anyway, in college I was the co-manager of the school’s Writing Center for two years. The professor who ran the writing center, Arnie, gave me a thank you present when I graduated: a pocket-sized copy of Paradise Lost from 1831!

1831 PL cover page

I can hold it in one hand! It’s so little! And look:

pl writing

Some kid practiced their letters and numbers in ballpoint pen inside! I love that. That kid doesn’t care one bit about the monetary value of old books. And neither do I. The gift — all of these gifts — is so much more than its monetary value.

Oh, and of course…

Paradise Sauced cocktail drink

1.5 oz vodka, 1 oz sour apples schnapps, 1/2 oz lime juice and 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar and you, too, can be of the Devil’s party without knowing it.


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