GeekBlog August, 3rd 2010 by Todd Bristow

Torgo Rant vol. Ammonia

I hate books

I love to read. I’m that kind of nerd. I wanted to cancel last nights couchcast recording because the new Brian Keene Keene book arrived in the mail. But, I didn’t because Barry would have beat me with it and I don’t want the spine creased. Anyway…reading. Like. Check.

The only thing I like more than reading is buying the books. My personal reading backlog is over 100 books long because for every one I read I tend to buy five. When the zombie-robot-poxyclipse comes, I am good to go. As my fellow novel reader will probably attest, when you are finished with a book you either 1.) give it to a friend or 2.) put it the re-sale pile to be turned in to your friendly neighborhood used book store. Well my stack was looking a bit large so it was time to turn in the pile for credit. I go to the store, give the book pile to the nice lady to be grossly undervalued and poke around while she takes her sweet time.

I head to the graphic novel section.

(By the way, if your used book store doesn’t have a graphic novel section, rip your stack of turn-ins from the heathen behind the counter and RUN. You’re not dealing with a used bookseller, you are dealing with the school teacher from Pink Floyd’s The Wall.)

The graphic novel section of my favorite store was filled with the usual mish-mash of Marvel Essential collections, Joe Sacco travelogues, and Peter Bagge humor. But, at the bottom, calling out to me sweetly, I see the DC comics Absolute Edition of Promethia vol 1. Now, I don’t know anything about this book. All I know is that it is written by Alan Moore and I LOVE DC’s Absolute editions. It’s price is a mere $46 (a great price for these editions) and seems to be in great condition. I pull the book from it’s beautiful protective sleeve and thumb through the pages. Gorgeous. Absolutely breathtaking. I am about to put it back in the sleeve when my spider sense starts going off.

Something isn’t right.

I instinctively smell the book. It has the clean print smell these editions usually have….but… there’s a hint of something… I put the book back in the sleeve and then smell the sleeve. It hit me like Thor’s Hammer.

Cat piss. Old, soaked-in cat piss. Oh no.

I put the book down and smell my hands. It’s there. All over my hands. I futilely try to scrape my hands across anything I can; the floor, the bookcase, a statue of Shakespeare. No dice. Once it’s there, it’s there. I go outside to rub my hands in sanitizing solution. Now my hands smell like medicinal cat piss. Only after going to the bathroom and after numerous scrubs does the smell start to dissipate.

so… just throwing it out there….

If you have a cat with a bladder problem or bring another one home and they start spraying for turf and then they just happen to soak your first edition copy of Dark Knight Returns, you have a decision to make: Do I want to keep this foul heirloom, or do I want to dispel the evil by ritually burning it. There is no other choice. Don’t sell it, you foul bastard because if you don’t want it, NO ONE ELSE WANTS IT EITHER! Sure you may be tricksies and slip it past Miss Bookstore Buyback because chances are she already owns a few cats and it has broken her sense of smell. But it harms everything it touches. Other books. Customers. Families.

And if you are the one who sold this foul tome to my bookstore. I will find you and I will wipe every foul thing you can imagine into the pages of the religious heirloom you great grandmother passed down to be read every Christm-Chauna-Kwanzica so that every reading of the great passage is followed by the cleansing baptism of your stinking hands.

I also hope you get chlamydia.

Torgo out.

1 Comment


  • Steve says

    I had to make that decision after my cat puked on the corner of my copy of the Cip Kidd Superman book. It was a gorgeous book and a present from a friend and the puke only fouled a tiny corner. But it was there. And it was gross. And there was nothing I could do to save the pages without destroying them anyway. Dumpster. Waah!