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Random thought of the moment for January 15, 2002: 

Book Buying 101

 Will be updated daily, weekly, month, or whenever I'm in the mood.

The beginning of the semester is filled with many new responsibilities.  Buying textbooks is a must.  However, don't even think that it can be done in 15 minutes.  Here is an outline describing the book buying process:

1. Choose your bookstore:  In this case, we'll call them Bookstores A, B, and C.

2. Wade though crowds of people fighting for the last used copy of "Economics of Underdeveloped Countries, Part XII, Rev. 3.5"

3. Of course, Bookstore A has your world history book and your biology workbook, but none of your other books .  Everyone else beat you to the punch.  Note:  Both of the books you found at Bookstore A were brand new (aka add 50% to your total bill).

4. Give up and decide to go buy them anyway.  All the prices are the same at every bookstore, and B and C are probably out of used copies, as well.

5. Almost max out your credit card buying the textbooks, and head to Bookstore B to find your other books.

6. As soon as you step in the door, you find that they have a huge stack of the USED world history books.  Remember, you just bought a brand new one a few minutes ago at Bookstore A.  It'll save you $20!  

7. You start jumping for joy and rush up to the counter to buy it.  Then, it's back to Bookstore A to return the more expensive one you bought 10 minutes earlier.  What jerks they are by trying to take advantage of poor college students so they can have money to put an XBox in the break room!

8.  Back at Bookstore A, you return the world history book.  You were so overjoyed about finding the bargain at Bookstore B, you forgot to look if they had the other 3 books you needed.

9.  So, you find visiting Bookstore B again.  Wow, they have a USED copy of the much-needed philosophy book!  Of course, they don't have your other two books.  The math book is on back-order til Thursday and they've never heard of the other textbook you need.  

10.  Onward to Bookstore C!  You dislocate a rib fighting a guy in his 30s for a math book.  As you're fumbling for the credit card at the cash register, you find your syllabus for your philosophy class.  You just now notice the 18 pt, bold print saying that the professor requires you to have a copy that contains a CD-ROM.  Of course, that book happened to come from Bookstore B.  None of the books there had CD-ROMs with them.  The students who had them last semester lost them, and the bookstores bought the books back anyway.  So, you begrudgingly pick up the new copy at Bookstore C and head BACK to Bookstore B to return the other one.

11.  Okay, you're down to your last book.  Unfortunately, it's on back-order at all 3 bookstores because there are about 900 students taking the class.  3 days later, Bookstore A has a copy.  You buy it for an insane amount, and you end up opening it once the entire semester because the teacher gets all of the test questions from the notes.

12. 3 days and $500 later, you have all of  your books.  You use two of them regularly throughout the semester.

13. The end of the semester arrives.  They buy 3 of the 5 textbooks back from you and give you $50 total.  They already bought back all of the math books they needed, so you're stuck with that.  The world history book is yours too because the professors decided to get the 6th edition for next semester, so your 5th edition is useless.  How can world history "change"?

14.  It all starts over again next semester...      

 

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Copyright 2002.  Lauren Siegert.  All Rights Reserved.