Gimme your brains!

You know what getting a job at a bookstore has taught me? It’s taught me that customers are Zombies. I believe that you, dear reader, have come across this really addictive game called Plants vs Zombies. Well, working in a bookstore is just like playing an extended, 8-hour round of PvZ, only you can’t shoot customers and they won’t eat your brain (really?).

Store Opening

Store Opening

Opening hour: It’s 10 a.m., man! Who wakes up at this hour? *All staff sing and bob along to background music like sunflowers*

10 a.m. - 1 p.m.

10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Brunch time: Grrr! I’m coming! The odd few early risers come strolling into the store. Easy-peasy. *Continue bobbing along to the music*

Lunch Time

Lunch Time

Lunch/Dinner time: BAM BAM! When your stomach growls, it means lunch/dinner is coming. It also means a huge crowd of just-eaten-brunch-no-need-lunch-haha customers is approaching. *Smile and act normal*

RAR! We can't wait!

RAR! We can’t wait!

A relatively long line forms at the counter, comprising normal customers, slightly pissed customers and the occasional bucket-heads (those that make a huge fuss for having to wait 5 minutes for their turn to pay and toss the book and $50 note at you). Right, I’m still holding a grudge against that lady.

Screenshot 2013-12-24 00.30.14


After lunch: The store is relatively peaceful again. The only difference from the opening hour is the number of people lurking between the shelves.

All prepared for the final showdown.

All prepared for the final showdown.

After dinner: The quiet can be quite unnerving, especially if you know what’s coming up next. Usually, this time is used for water breaks, toilet breaks and conserving the last of your energy.

The picture says it all.

The picture says it all.

Half an hour before closing: Here comes the bulk of the day’s customers. It’s as if the closing announcement stimulated a neuron in their brains, telling them to rush at once to the cashier counter. It’s either that or the sight of the first customer at the counter set up a mad rush to be the first well forget that, not be the last to pay.

Shedding blood, sweat, tears & PATIENCE.


Those pesky customers really want your brains the final half hour. It’s alright if they’re normal, unconed, unbucketed, unpoled customers. Well, some of them aren’t. And that can really affect you especially when all you see when you look up is that long line of zombies customers staring straight at you.

After all that is said, my dear readers, don’t let this post discourage you from getting a job at a bookstore. It is tiring and a huge test of your patience sometimes, but being able to find hidden gems, to sneak in a little browsing and to buy books at staff price, I think it’s pretty cool.

P.S. Happy New Year! Here’s wishing everyone a wonderful, kick-ass 2014. Live life to the fullest and keep doing what you love.

P.P.S. Yes, I played PvZ for this post. You can see that the pictures are not in order of the game level, because I sometimes forgot to take screenshots when the zombies got a little too threatening…


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