Somehow, when you work in a bookstore, people come to see you, not as a regular human being, but as some sort of conglomeration of encyclopedia/ computer/ therapist/ confidante/ summarizer/ judge/ magician. I do not know why this is, but it is.
Let me illustrate with some brief, and most importantly REAL scenarios (or based on real scenarios) that I or my coworkers have lived through. Some are funny, some are sad, some are down right WEIRD.
(note: any and all books I may or may not mention are only for illustrative purposes and I am not recommending/reviewing or otherwise supporting any of the said listed books)
Man: (Rushes through store to information desk, gasping for breath.) I have a strange question for you. What is the name of the doctor that works with Beaker, you know, the muppet that just meeps?
Me: (trying not to laugh) I don't really know.
Man: Well can you look it up somewhere?
I find a book in Self Help written by Kermit the Frog and find the name (which is Honeydew, by the way, Bunsen Honeydew). Customer thanks me and races back out of the store without buying ANYTHING.
Lady: Excuse me, do you have "Falcon at the Portal"?
Me: Let me just look it up.
Lady: (huffs in exasperation) Well, just tell me where it would be.
Me: I don't know. I'm not familiar with that title. Let me check.
Lady: Well, the author's incredibly popular and sells a lot of books. I'm sure you have them.
Lady: I'm sorry, I'm kind of out of it. My sister died yesterday, so I'm just trying to figure things out.
Little Old Lady: Could you please tell me where the books on the Kama Sutra are? My husband is too embarrassed to ask, but we're looking for something to spice things up a little.
Teenage Boy: Out of these five books on my summer reading list, which one is shortest, but also interesting so it will keep my attention and what are they all about?
Me: Would you like me to write your paper for you too?
Man: I'm looking for books on indoor gardening.
Me: Let me see what the computer says we have. (scroll through several pages) It doesn't look like we have anything in stock.
Man: No, I saw something a couple pages back (points at book on hydroponic marijuana)
Me: (in calm, even, bored tone) Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't realize that was what you were looking for. (Yes, we sell books on this. I just show people to the books, that's all)
Man: (snaps) No comments, please, just show me to the section.
Lady: I was in here last April and you had a book on a table in the front of the store that looked really interesting. It had a blue cover and was written by a woman and I think it was $24.95. Do you know the book I'm talking about?
If there is one thing true about my job, it is that I am NEVER bored. Ever.