Saturday, 13 March 2010

I entered the bookshop.

I entered the bookshop. I apologise for the lack of drama in this introduction, but it's true. I did, in fact, enter the bookshop. Well, not entirely true. Actually, I'm pretty much making this all up.
 So, I entered the bookshop and took a casual glance around. I hadn't come for anything in particular, I was just trying to pass a few hours before going home. The bookshop, large and open, was fairly generic, and probably has some sort of generic name that was similar to a real bookshop, like WaterSmiths, or something else stupid. It wasn't busy, which was good - I can rarely stomach eating a crowd - mainly populated by sheepish looking men in coats, squinting through over-sized glasses at books they don't want, and turning down offers of help with polite embarrassment. However, something did catch my eye: There, in the middle of the room, a table had been set up. Piles of books were stacked to one side, and a balding, bearded man in an ill-fitting suit was seated behind it. Above the table, a large banner explained the situation to me.
 "Meet Shakespeare's reanimated corpse!" It said. Of course, I thought, that explains the piles of Shakespearean texts next to the table.
 I watched for a few minutes. No-one showed any interest in the table, or the man behind it. It was very sad, I reflected sadly. On the other hand, I wasn't going to go over there, the man was a liar: Branding so much of his work comedy, when only Romeo and Juliet was actually funny.
 Shakespeare himself didn't seem too upset by the lack of customers either. In fact, he seemed more confused by the pen he was holding, clicking the lid over and over again. A few of the sheepish looking men were passing his table, trying to get to the agriculture section behind him. Their expressions were those of men who really felt they should go to the table, but really didn't want to.
 Presently, a suited man I took to be the manager emerged from the back of the store, and stormed up to the table. Emotionally, he made a plea for people to take an interest in the re-animated author:
 "Come on people!" He yelled, "Why, this man is one of the most famous authors and poets of all time! fire-spewing tales! I mean, even if that doesn't interest you, the man has been brought back from the dead. Surely you at least have some questions? He can tell you about heaven, for God's sake!"
 "Lot of women... Almost too many, and not enough cooking being done..." I heard Shakespeare mutter, but we should remember he was from another time...
 "Yes!" Yelled the manager again. "Good old fashioned bigotry, from a historical figure! I mean, look how sad he is! How embarrassed! He's here to sign his work, and no-one turned up!"
 Shakespeare, catching on to what was being said, sighed and slumped head in hands.
 "I mean, give him some company at least! All his friends and family are long dead, and he's lost in a world he doesn't understand!"
 At this, Shakespeare began to cry. After a few minutes, he seemed to stop, and the manager began jabbing him with a stick. Feeling sorry for him, I gave him a few pieces of candy and a fiver, then headed home. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, men shouldn't play God in bookshops. It only leads to upset authors.

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