Wednesday, February 11, 2015

The Things You Don't Buy

La Jolla
We went to a church rummage sale this week and picked up a bunch of books. What I left behind was a complete set of the newer editions of Sjowal and Wahloo's Martin Beck series. As soon as I got home I realized I should have bought them. But I had said to myself, "Patti, you have read all of these books and you will have to ship them home and they will probably sit on a shelf until you pass them on to a sale back home. So I didn't buy them.

I rushed back the next morning, but of course they were gone.

Has this ever happened to you? What book(s) did you leave sitting on a table?

15 comments:

Charles Gramlich said...

I do have a few regrets like that. Never leave a book unbought is my motto.

Bill Crider said...

I'm with Charles. I believe in the George Kelley motto: The only books you regret are the ones you don't buy.

R.T. said...

I once took a pass on a signed first-edition of Flannery O'Connor's Wise Blood because I could not devote that much money to a book. Perhaps I should have sprung for it and settled for five or six months of meager rations, accumulation of overdue bills, and destruction of my credit rating.

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

Don't remind me. On one of our last book buying trips through England I saw a trade paperback complete set of the Randolph Churchill/Martin Gilbert authorized biography of Winston Churchill. I'd already read the first five volumes and just wanted the next one but toyed with buying the set. I figured, "Nah, I only really need the one volume. I'll pick it up in London or along the way."

Needless to say, I never saw another copy - the hardbacks are way beyond what I want to spend - and I've been kicking myself ever since. Jackie told me to buy it but I didn't listen. Stupid!

I'm not at home to check so I can't be sure, but I believe the town was Morpeth in Northumberland. The set of books was in the window.

Jeff M.

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

As for the Sjowall & Wahloo books, I did pick up the first five volumes in the new edition. I had to settle for an older edition for the other five, but I suppose I should check on updating those to have the matched set,

And yes, I've read them all before.

Jeff M.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Phil always says to buy it. But the having to mail it back to MI stopped me. So stupid.
Ironically, he found a book he'd been looking for years sitting on a table out at UCSD. So he's happy at least.

John said...

This happens to me all the time! But usually I pass up a book because of an exorbitant price tag. Even worse than this hesitancy is being at a sale, eyeing a book and not being able to get to it in time. Watching a stranger take away the book you want and buying it for himself. To me that's more upsetting than passing up a book, coming back to look for it later and finding it gone.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I passed up those books for $.50 each. Shoot me!! Of course, mailing them back to Michigan would have raised it a bit.
I watched a man decide to buy a set of prints a few months ago. He left four behind. Killed me because an hour earlier they were mine!

Kent Morgan said...

It happened to me last week at out Children's Hospital Book Market. When I came in, I walked by the sports books tables and picked up a nice hockey book priced at $8.00. I mentioned to the man in charge that it was a book I liked and took off for the older paperback section. It turned out that there wasn't one and when I came back, the book I picked up was gone. No problem I found plenty of other books and sold a bunch the following day when I was staffing the sports books section. Yesterday I passed on a nice hardcover of Marjorie Rawlings' Cross Creek. I may be sorry.

Deb said...

Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath changed my acquisition habits. I used to buy used books at a rapid clip, then we had to put hundreds, nay thousands, of books into a storage unit (at $99 a month--storage units were going at premium rates then, as you can understand) while our house was repaired. During that time, I realized I had almost 700 the books, not to mention books that I'd read but were "keepers". Finally, I realized I had to let some go. So I culled, culled, and culled some more. I still kept my favorites, but I don't buy much anymore. I use the library (and inter-library loan) a lot.

Deb said...

700 tbr books.

/stupid autocorrect!

Cap'n Bob said...

I didn't buy a few comic books way back when because I thought they were too expensive. Like Amazing Fantasy 15 (first Spiderman appearance) for $15, and the first Batman for $300. Also a few EC horror comics. Oh, for a time machine.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Yes, I never put my books down even though the people often try to get me to. Lost more than one like that. My house is my TBR pile. And now this one too.

George said...

You always regret the books you didn't buy. That might explain why I buy so many books!

Margot Kinberg said...

I've definitely left behind books I wish I'd bought. Hindsight and all that....