Religious Experience
by Peter Zelchenko January 29, 2010

[Customer enters the Loop Barnes & Noble.]

Excuse me, can you help me locate a book?

That's what we've got here, and that's what I'm here for!

Oh, nice. Well, it's The Elementary Forms of Religious Life by Emile Durkheim.

Let's look that up. Ahh, here it is.

Oh, thank god.

For what?

Thank god you have it. Honestly, I've been looking everywhere for it.

Did I ever say we had it? I said, "Ahh, here it is."

Doesn't that mean you have it?

Nope. It means we can get you a copy for pickup right here in three to five days. Or, you can go to Wheaton and pick up a copy.

Uh, Wheaton? But I'd like to read it today!

Well, there are two copies in our Wheaton store. If traffic is good, you can just make it there before dark and be at home reading by 8 or 9 p.m.!

What is Wheaton doing with Durkheim? Don't you have a sociology section here, or only in Wheaton?

Oh, sure, it's downstairs, but you're not going to find it there.

How do you know?

The computer already told me.



I, uh, well, thank you.

You're absolutely welcome!

[Takes a few steps to leave, then turns around.]

[He just couldn't resist, could he?]

Actually, I'm looking for another book. It's called The Trump Card: Playing to Win in Work and Life by Ivanka Trump. Do you, uh, happen to have a copy?

Oh, of course! We have plenty of her. We're selling bunches of her, and we have more boxes in the back. You can find her in several places, including "Self-Improvement" and "Biography." Oh, and she's also in "New Titles."

You don't say.

She's a great read. Really inspiring.

I didn't need to know that.

She really is.

Oh, god. Now, look here. We're in one of the largest cities in the world. No, in the universe. We are, you and I, standing smack-dab in the center of that city, where highways, railroads, and millions of people converge. The two monopoly bookstores in the center of this city, Borders and Barnes & Noble, are filled to bursting with the ghostwritten blather of the world's most spoiled real estate nepotiz cheesecake. I'm tripping over this book everywhere I turn. But you don't carry a mainstay by the father of modern sociology in your "Sociology" section! How do you explain that?

Well! Do I detect a little note of envy? And, actually, sir, he wasn't the father of modern sociology.

Of course he was. How would you know that?

It says right here on the computer that he was just a "pillar." It actually says this Webber guy was the daddy.

Jeez, it's pronounced "vayber," not "webber." Jeez. Okay. I gotta go find someplace to breathe. I'm being suffocated by Ivanka Trump!

Anyway, I highly recommend her. Just remember her famous saying: "We've all been dealt a winning hand and it is up to each of us to play it right and smart!"

What?! Wait. You're kidding, right?

Not at all! She's inspired me to pursue a career in real estate!

Okay. Okay. I really gotta get out of here.

[Customer walks away.]

Just remember, sir! We've all been dealt a winning hand!

[Customer exits the Loop Barnes & Noble.]

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