“When a bookmark tumbles out of an old book pristine and unwrinkled, it is like a gasp of breath from another century.”
As many of you may know, I work in a library. I was training a new employee this past week and when I showed her the Lost and Found bins, I mentioned a few of the items we sometimes find inserted within the pages of the books that come down the chutes. She was a little surprised at some of them, and I got to thinking it would be fun to make a list of all the “bookmarks” I’ve personally encountered over the years. What do you think of some of these?
Due date slips (obviously)
Postcards from all over the world
Airline boarding passes, printed with destinations all over the world
Brightly coloured Post-Its on every.single.page. of a 300+ page book
Price tags from articles of clothing
Receipts and tickets from movies, concerts, etc.
Facial tissue – and my particular favourite, toilet paper (thankfully it’s always unused!)
Snow in the winter, grass in the summer
Lollipops – wrapped and unwrapped (and partially consumed)
Pencils, pens, crayons
Paper money in small denominations
Pages of schoolwork
Single playing cards and trading or game cards such as Pokemon
Parts of a manuscript for a novel
A handwritten note which stated we were the recipients of a Random Act of Kindness and we were offered best wishes to have a wonderful day (how sweet is that?)
Payroll stubs – and paycheques!
Certificates of various achievements
Sudoku, crossword puzzles (always mostly completed)
Cross stitch samplers
Sketches/artwork/doodles (including a child’s macaroni masterpiece!)
Lists of books to borrow next time
“Honey Do” lists
Cigarettes, not smoked
Oh yeah, and actual bookmarks of every size and shape, homemade and store-bought. Besides the obvious (ie: the toilet paper!), we always keep everything in case someone comes by to claim their items.
Do you use an actual bookmark when you read print books, or do you employ whatever is handy? What is the strangest thing you’ve ever used as a bookmark?