How did you get into the Book Business?
Long Story - Medium Length Version
I often saw myself in that image.
In the Fall of 1980 I wrote a piece inspired by the image for one of our "ECLECTIC" catalogs:
THE BOOK HUNTER
AS AN ECLECTIC PHILOSOPHER
The Book Collector is by nature and practice a confirmed eclectic.
He strains at the topmost step of an old library ladder
in search of a certain book,
when his mind and eye chance to fall upon another.
The look of the spine alone - gilt, or blind, or bare
stimulates a curiosity that requires instant satisfaction.
"Author, Title, Place and Date" are his at first opening.
Before long, a passage or two fascinates the finder
and he chortles to himself with pleasure or thought.
This dulset adventure suggests another volume,
with an argument or tale
that would be satisfactory and interesting to find.
Another hunt is made,
and then another.
With books in each hand,
under arm, and between knees...
he stands poised upon his uneasy perch
The hours pass unnoticed.
It is a luxurious and enjoyable time.
A pursuit that fills the mind
with varied knowledge and wisdom.
ec-lec'tic, (Greek: eklektikos, from elegein; to select, pick-out).
Selecting: choosing: not from one model or leader,
but choosing at will from the doctrines, works, philosophies, etc... of others.
"Cicero was of the eclectic sect,
and chose out of each,
such positions as came nearest truth"