Bargain shopping again.

We went to London today for dinner at Mexicali Rosa's for my uncle's 60th birthday. It was a surprise party and the double-take he did when he walked in was priceless. He said after, that he saw my brother first and thought, “what a coincidence!” and then looked around and realized that he knew everyone in the room.

The food was ok, a bit pricey, but the margaritas were great. And it was good to see everyone again.

We went into the city early to do some shopping before dinner. Stopped at Zellers to get a birthday card and some glasses (the kids get a little enthusiastic when they're doing the dishes and glasses get broken from time to time. our supply was dwindling). When that was done, we had some time left, so I asked Ice if we could run over to Chapters. I still had a gift certificate from Christmas and there was something specific I wanted to get. Or, at least, look for.

When we got to Chapters, Ice took the kids over to the children's section to entertain them and I wandered around the store. I don't go there often enough to know where things are (except the computer books and the music) so I was having some trouble finding what I wanted. A store employee came along and asked if she could help me find anything.

“Could you tell me where the reference books are?”
“Well.... what kind of reference books?”

Silly me. I thought most bookstores had a section called ‘Reference’. So I explained:

“I'm looking for a single volume encyclopedia type book.”
“Well.... we don't really carry that kind of book anymore because most people use the internet to find information.”

Gee, you don't say? And if the information isn't online, what do they do? No, I didn't say that out loud.

She headed towards the back of the store and took me to a section called (surprise!) ‘Reference’. I could see right away that they didn't have anything close to what I was looking for so I told her that and said thanks but she kept talking.

“Really, you can find pretty much everything you need on the internet.”

While she was saying this, she was walking over to another section. I was a bit confused as to why she was taking me to the computer books but I followed along. She headed over to one of the walls and pointed out a book that was on display.

The Internet for Dummies

“If you don't know how to search for things online, this should help.”

I assured her that I have some experience finding things online and thanked her again but she still wasn't done.

“Are you having trouble finding sites about Canadians?”

Now, she gets some credit for trying to be helpful but I had told her earlier that I wanted the book for a website about Canadians. The girl was not paying attention.

I was amused though so I said thanks yet again and finally got rid of her. Since I couldn't find what I was originally looking for and since, you know, I was already in the computer section, I thought I'd look around there. They had a display of ‘New & Hot!’ O'Reilly books that I was looking over when I spotted a Perl book on a shelf nearby.

The thing was huge, nearly 1300 pages, and it came with a CD. The price on the back said ‘CAN $92.99’ but, more importantly, the sticker on the front said ‘80% off’. It wasn't all that old, I don't have any Perl books, and Newt says I should learn. So I bought it. After using my gift certificate, it only cost me $6.39 (including tax).

It seemed like a pretty good deal to me.

Posted by Ripley on March 23, 2003

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