Ah, books!

It’s the middle of August and after a long summer of drudgery, of sleeping in, of chores and odd jobs and photographic odysseys to the countryside, I find my mind stretching schoolward once again. 

The courses I picked back in July – so that’s all done and good. Now, dear professors, I’d like to get my books. 

Going into my sixth semester, there are a couple of things I wonder about. Perhaps you can help:

Why, if I can (nay, must) book my courses in late June or early July, can I not pick up my books at the same time? Why are book lists never out until one week before term starts? I have to believe that I am not the only keener who would do summer pre-reading were the list available. Is it a matter of professorial organization that the lists are not complete? I could see that if it were a first time putting the course together, but since so many of these courses are offered time and again, I find this a little puzzling.

Also, why does the book store insist on allowing a mere two-weeks return policy on books – and then only if unopened? This, to me, discriminates against those who are enthusiastic enough to dedicate some R & R time to future studies. I mean, picture the poor student who books a course, then gradually reviews the text book, only to learn that the material isn’t exactly what he thought, and then finds out that because he opened the book and took 15 days to do it  he’s – what’s the phrase? – out of luck. He can drop the course I believe up to three weeks into the semester, so why does he get stuck with the books? To me, this just doesn’t make a lot of sense. 

The Book Repository

Anyway, I’m watching for the book lists for my courses, and in my mind I’m starting to get fired up for the new school year. I have an advantageous schedule this year – in the fall all my classes are on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and in the winter semester they’re all on Mondays. This will be very good for designating study time, and will reduce the amount of bus travel significantly.

I have to admit, I’m looking forward to getting this final year going. 



Once again I’m puzzled by the book thing. I went on Saturday and tried to buy my books for the upcoming semester. I signed in, printed off the list, and went hunting. I found most of them, but this General Studies course is something else, as it was last time. Okay, I know, it’s called Communication and Culture 501a this time because they re-jigged to half courses.

There are three books listed for CMCL501a (Modernity) and I picked them up in a package from a great big pile at the end of the row. I paid for it and went back to my car. (I know, this is exciting, isn’t it?) Once back in the car, rather like Christmas, I ripped into the package to examine my new treasures. I immediately noticed that one of the books was the same as for GNST300 (now CMCL300). I did a double-take and compared it against the list that printed off. All present and correct, but a duplicate to a book I studied last fall and winter. Concerned about this duplication I started a slow boil, but reduced that to an amused simmer when I realized that by being smart I can take steps to put the duplicate, brand-new, virgin book up for sale and perhaps make a little coffee money for my trouble. Anybody wanna buy a book?