I’m so jealous of everyone who gets their Christmas shopping done early. I was hoping to get the majority of my Christmas shopping completed after work yesterday, but my closing TM called in sick. I started to stress out a little bit because I needed to get packages into the mail immediately. I had to find a way to leave work and get some gifts, so I decided to take a long lunch and check out Powell’s Books. Maybe you’ve heard of Powell’s, it’s the largest independent used and new bookstore in the world.
I was walking around Powell’s for a good thirty minutes searching for some good gifts, but I couldn’t find anything. The place is enormous and arranged by huge colored zones. Frustrated and lost, I looked over to the customer next to me and said “This place is giving me anxiety. I can’t seem to find anything for anyone on my list.” The short plump man looked back at me and said “I’ve been here a few times, maybe I can help you out.” He asked me who was on my list and what kind of things they like. I told him about by cousin Liz and how she loves movies. He asked what kind of movies she likes. When I told him, he walked me to the North side of Powell’s, picked up an amazing book, and told me that I should get it for her. (I can’t tell you what book it was because she might be reading this blog post, but check back after Christmas and then I’ll tell you.) I picked up the book and then he asked who else was on my list. I told him about my friend Matt and how he used to live in Russia. Once again, this nice man walked me through several different rooms towards the perfect book. It’s like he had some kind of nerdy super power where he could pick out the perfect book for everyone on my list. He handed me the book and asked me who was next, but I had run out of time. I told him that I had to get back to work and I thanked him for all of his help. I reached out my hand and introduced myself. He shook my hand and announced that he was Mr. Powell… The Mr. Powell. The owner of Powell’s Books just took a few minutes out of his busy day to help me find two Christmas gifts. It was like a Christmas miracle on Burnside street.