Do you have this book? Title mix-ups make me laugh.

They say that laughing is good for you. It increases oxygen intake, produces endorphins in the brain, eases tensions, and generally makes you seem like a pleasant person with a ready sense of humor. So here’s the healthful moment of the day brought to you by a phone patron requesting a book. He asked for “The Elegance of the Hodge-Podge.”  I love that title! I wish someone would write that book.

My co-worker Nancy said she got a real charge out of the patron who asked for “The Girl Who Kicked the Garbage Can.”

Have any fractured titles to add? Please share them and help those endorphins flow.

Barbara L.


4 thoughts on “Do you have this book? Title mix-ups make me laugh.

  1. Gah, yes! I went around for a couple of months asking for “The Cohn Mutiny” when what I wanted was “Citizen Cohn” – about Roy Cohn, by Nicholas Von Hoffman. Finally, one day it was right on a rack in front of me while I was asking yet another salesperson and it clicked.

  2. I am an experienced bookseller. The worst butchering of a title I heard was “The Life and Times of Chloe” by a South American author. She was looking for “Love in the Time of Cholera”.

  3. I just remembered this one: a patron was shocked that the library did not have the classic “A Portrait of Dorian Gray” (Oscar Wilde). She said that our database showed no holdings. I said what she really wanted was “The Picture of Dorian Gray.” She had confused it with “A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man” (James Joyce). She was unconvinced until I showed her the catalog listings. Still a bit huffy after being shown her error, she implied that the database should have known what she meant. Someday, maybe, computers will know what we really want.
    Barbara L.

  4. The librarian mag, RQ, reported the case of a student who was furious that his college library didn’t carry the required text for his biology class: “Oranges and Peaches”. You know, the one by that guy named Charles? No? About how people come from monkeys and stuff? Aw, come on you MUST have this, what kind of a library is… Oh. “Origin of Species”…yeah that could maybe be it.

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