Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Cigarettes Kill Books, Too



My new friend Sherry walks up to me with a green bag full of paperback books.

"Are you a reader?" she asks. Well, sure! I've read 13 books since Dec.13.

"Then here," she says. "Maybe you can find something in here you can read."

I'm more than just a reader.  I'm a collector. Well, a hoarder, really. I must have 2,000 books, half inherited from my father and the rest picked up at thrift stores, yard sales, Amazon.com, Barnes & Nobles, friends. I love books. 

But, ACK! Not these books.

I open the sack  and Phew! They stink. Like cigarettes. I'm a reformed smoker. The worst kind. I can't stand the smell of cigarettes. It sickens me. These books sicken me.

A smoker gave these books to Sherry, who now gives them to me because she's not fond of any of the authors (Harold Robbins, Belva Plain, John Lescroart, Anne Rivers Siddons, Maeve Binchy).

I've read nothing by any of these authors, never found a reason to be interested in these authors and own no other books by these authors, But, I'm a hoarder. A book hoarder. I need to keep these books. So I post a question on facebook: What can I do to get cigarette smell out of books? 

I MUST rescue these books. I NEED to keep them.

The sentiments pour in from my friends: Burn them, recycle them, just throw them away, baking soda, laundry sheets. 

I try laundry sheets and now the books stink like cigarettes and chemicals. We leave them outside overnight and still cigarettes claim them. 

There is no hope. No cure. Cigarettes kill.

So I pack them up in a sealed bag and head to the trash bin. On my way, I see two people, smoking. I offer them the books. I explain why, you know, about the smell. They open the bag and sniff. Smells fine to them.

So I essentially recycled the books, sparing them a sure death. And me the smell.

1 comment:

Linda said...

Next time put the books in an airtight container with some charcoal briquets. At least, this worked for me on gasoline fumes. Then you won't have to give away books by some authors I enjoy.