Thursday, December 30, 2004

Mystery Magazine My Ass

Inbetween soliciting strangers for sex today, I noticed the current edition of The Strand Magazine sitting on a nearby newstand. After browsing through it, I have to say that it was almost completely different than what I expected-- i.e., it wasn't composed entirely of pictorial layouts of Nancy holding me down and kicking me in the testicles repeatedly (which, incidentally, was the only interesting thing I got for Christmas*).

*Just kidding. I got herpes for Christmas. Again.

(Thanks a lot, Grandma. I'll keep it next to the new socks....somehow.)

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Holly Jolly

This flyer was included with all employee paychecks yesterday. . . obstensibly our "bonus."

Personally, I find it very, very offensive.

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Most Coveted Task of the Day

Are the rumors true? Fred sending out errand-boys to Saks to pick up a fur coat worth several thousands of dollars? "Hey, you, kid-- no no, the dirtier one-- no, not you, I want the filthy, poor one-- yeah, you! Run along and grab a bag of roadkill worth more than your entire life, chop-chop."

I would have loved to see the interaction between Fancy Store Salesperson and Abjectly Destitute Non-bathing Strand Worker.

FSS: May I . . . help you?

ADNSW: Coats . . . gurgglhhggfzzz . . . need soup . . . where is soup. . . ?

FSS: Excuse me?

ADNSW: Please . . . I don't . . . I have a . . . a dumpster . . . .

FSS: Please sir, get off the floor.

ADNSW: [Foams at mouth; shoves both hands in pants]

[Long silence]

FSS: Ohhhhhhhhhh, you must be here for the coat.

Yes, this happened on company time, which of course isn't surprising at all. What would be surprising is Mrs. Fred opening up her present on Christmas morning to discover an actual fur coat, instead of a cheap ringer substituted for the original (which has since been pawned for three years' pay and some Chili's gift certificates).

Wednesday, December 22, 2004


From an anonymous email, subject line "cold-hearted Strand" (A possibly gratuitous, but more likely unintentional Paula Abdul reference? Yes!):

There is no heat on the main floor of the Strand. There might be a radiator going off without use in some corner of the Strand, but step on to the main floor on a day like yesterday [12/20/04] where it was twenty degrees outside and you can see your breath when you exhale. There are no federal regulations requiring an employer to control the temperature of a workplace, but sadly, for penny-pinching Fred Bass, he is operating his store in New York City, where labor unions were able to secure some workplace rights before they faded into irrelevance.

Just as your landlord is required to provide heat for you in these cold winter months, so is your employer. Call 311 (NY Government) and tell them you want to file a complaint. I did this morning. It takes ten minutes, and with enough complaints, they will investigate faster. You can file anonymously. If the owners want to stiff us out of fair wages and decent healthcare, they are at least going to have to provide a heated workplace where you don't need to wear a scarf, hat, and at least three layers of sweaters just to stifle the shivering. Keep fighting and praise god that you live in a town with progressive laws. Just try calling OSHA (1-800-321-OSHA) to get the New York number to call and you will see that you are lucky, that OSHA deliberately stonewalls and doesn't provide any assistance to help you find out about local regulations, will refuse to. While the federal labor group atrophies, we still at least have good progressive New York laws, and friendly people on the other end of 311, eager to take your complaint.

Are you suggesting that those small space heaters conveniently located next to the managers' desks are insufficient for warming hundreds of thousands of square feet of retail space?

Watch out for Fred's Pinkerton thugs, bud. Someday very soon you'll be walking through the M-through-O Literature aisle and feel a blackjack cracking up against that thick commie skull of yours. . . you'll wake up to find yourself naked, slathered in scallion cream cheese, and being eaten alive by sewer rats. . . or as I refer to it, "a successful Friday night."*

My own solution is to just set the place on fire, as matches are cheaper than sweaters, and almost as much fun to play with.

*with the possible (but by no means necessary) substitution of ugly women for sewer rats

Paula Abdul Paula Abdul Paula Abdul

Tuesday, December 21, 2004


A Christmas haiku. . . for you. . .
there's snow in my shoe
consume, vomit red and green
what the fuck is nog

(submitted anonymously by Monica)

"I'm looking for a.....hey!...Hey!!'s like...dolphins???!!! Dammit! Dammit!"
(employee Five)

This would be funny if it hadn't happened to me yesterday. I'm not sure exactly what it is about the combination of retail and the birth of Jesus that's so awful, but I'm pretty sure it has something to do with talking to people and having rad dinosaurs on your shirt.

By the Way. . .

We may as well have a fucking slumber party, seeing how our "Holiday Party" is advertised as being this Friday at 8 IN THE FUCKING MORNING. Yeah, sure, I'll see you guys there! In fact, I may just happen to be at work 2 HOURS EARLY straightening things up anyway, so if you see me around, be sure to remind me about the festivities, and I'll run upstairs and try my best not to vomit copiously on Nancy's desk.

Good Night, Asshole

After collectively being evicted from their apartments, Strand employees have been graciously allowed to sleep on the elusive '4th floor' . . . .
(courtesy of employee Five)

Judging by the looks of the guy in the blue shirt, there will be no orgy to follow. . . maybe.

Friday, December 17, 2004

The Missing Link

I wish I were sober enough to have made this up. From the "Missed Connections" section of Craigslist.

Sandbox, Strand Bookstore- Stunning Woman in Dark Coat - m4w - 32

Reply to:
Date: 2004-12-14, 7:33PM EST

We got on the elevator together, and exchanged glances...I was the guy in the leather coat. You got off on Sandbox's floor, and we exchanged niceties- yet, I know on my end- I lost my voice!

I'd love to get to know you...

it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

A few thoughts:

1. Jesus Christ, buddy, I'm surprised that you even had a chance to 'glance' at that hottie, let alone talk to her. I mean, that elevator only takes 20 FUCKING MINUTES TO GO ANYWHERE, where do you get that sort of devil-may-care bravado? Kudos!

2. Guys that "exchange niceties" don't get laid.

3. We have a sandbox? And I've been masturbating in the bathroom all this time??

Please contact this intrepid gentleman at the email address above if you wish to offer thanks or words of encouragement. (It may be Matt from the front registers, if you wish to do so in person.)

Missed Encounter

Note on Previous Post

There's a slight possibility that I may not be able to retire on that much money. However, I've never actually seen that many digits in my bank account, and have absolutely no conception of how much money five thousand dollars is. When I hear it spoken aloud, it sounds exactly the same as my little sister saying "a million ga-billion dollars."

New Plan:

Buy "Take Five" scratchers from the deli on 13th & 4th on my lunchbreaks, win the $5,555 jackpot, do pantless victory laps up and down the stairs of the Strand. Quit job and retire in style.

Tonight's results: free ticket

Year-to-date earnings: -$6.00, or approximately one hour of my life (street value)

Newer plan: Hide cell-phone from self, drink 12 beers, call it a night.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

I Know There's a Joke Here Somewhere. . .

Oh wait, it's on us.

From a coworker (anonymous), via email:

Tonight, the union voted on the contract hammered out over the past few months by the negotiating committee composed of Strand employees, UAW folks*, and the owners. The union voted about 36 yes to 11 no to approve the contract, willingly stepping up to the noose. This is why the Strand Sucks because the greedy, rich owners find every way imaginable to shaft its workers. The new contract keeps the already low wages at the same level, continues the same set raise level of a whopping fifty two cents a year with no regard for a little thing called inflation.

But where they really shaft us is in health coverage, the one thing that one might have been at one point considered a benefit to working at the Strand. Co-pays for doctor visits are increasing 1,250% from $2 to $25. Prescription co-pays are also increasing to an insane amount from $2 to between $10 and $25, depending on how good the painkillers are you are getting to snort. That's what, about one weeks pay there? But the best part here is, you get $5 back if you present your receipt to the owner, so that that way, management can start harassing you until you are fired because they found out you were the one milking the healthcare system and raising their premiums.

Yes, yes, labor is dead. The Basses are dancing on its grave, singing dirty, capitalist tunes, and you are the ones filling their pockets, buying their wares.

Wow, what a buzzkill. Thanks for ruining the party, bud. Christ. (By the way, how good are the painkillers you get. . . ?)**

*Strand employees are part of United Auto Workers. (Don't ask.)
**Found it!

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

I Fucking Love the Post

(click to enlarge)

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Who the fuck is Troy?

Only one of these pictures appears when you type in "Nancy Bass" on Google's image search.

(click to enlarge)

Monday, December 13, 2004

Slightly Dated But Nonetheless Respectable Journalism Alert

From the top-notch news team at New York Magazine regarding store renovations (11/02, slightly edited):

The logjam of an entrance (which Bass admits "doesn't work at all", adding, "In fact, I believe that it is a Mexican entrance, and I will fire it immediately") will be renovated into submission, as will the truly horrifying bathroom. The slogan, EIGHT MILES OF BOOKS, will become SIXTEEN MILES. ("We already passed sixteen," says Bass, "but it gets to the point where nobody believes us . . . And then I get. . . angry. . ." she adds as a slight spasm appears on the right side of her face.) The third-floor rare-book room has already been remade into a rather sleek space, rentable for parties. (Imagine getting married at the Strand.)

Yes, imagine that indeed. In fact, I'm imagining it right now. Let's see, getting married on the third floor of the Strand Bookstore....hmmmm.....yeah, I can actually get into this idea..... I've never planned a wedding before, but considering the place, what's to plan? Many venues don't even bother to offer you a repulsive vermin infestation with which to decorate your wedding, nor do most chapels have a homeless person contingent sizeable enough to fill in as guests for the ceremony.

(Note: Can the guy who sprawls out on the sidewalk drinking motor oil double as a bridesmaid? Look into it.)

Hey, that guy on the fifth floor that looks like Meatloaf can be my best man, why the fuck not! You only get married once, right!

Wait, part of the deal isn't that Fred makes you marry his daughter, is it? Because I don't even think I'm capable of that much hate-sex.

Sunday, December 12, 2004

The Gawker Thing

Don't expect anything good to come out of more people knowing your life sucks. A lesson my father taught me well when I turned fourteen and he shaved my entire body.

Gawker Gets Alliterative

Wacky Strand Mad-libs!

It's like ad-libbing, except it's MAD!!!!!!! Hooo-hoooooo!!!!!

Strand Madlibs

Friday, December 10, 2004

By the Way...

Prospective Strand applicants:

On the job application you are given, there is a ten question match-the-author-to-the-book mini-test on the back.

FYI, the answer to every question is Jean-Paul Sartre. I believe that this is the only author Nancy has actually ever heard of, and that she frequently drops his name around the office* in a vain attempt to garner credibility for herself. Mention his name liberally in your interview.

*[e.g., "No-no-no-NO, you IDIOT, I don't want those expense reports now, I want them nine fucking minutes ago! Hey look, there goes Jean-Paul Sartre."]

Thursday, December 09, 2004

A Few Words on the Minimum Wage

From the New York Times (12/7):

Republicans in the State Senate forced through a measure on Monday that will gradually raise the minimum wage in New York State by $2 to $7.15 an hour by January 2007, overriding Gov. George E. Pataki's veto of the proposal.

. . .

Of the roughly eight million workers in New York, more than 700,000 earn $5.15 to $7.10 an hour, working mostly in retail and in the leisure and hospitality industries, say those on both sides of the issue.

Here's the thing: I'm all for helping the working poor in theory, but when it's in your own backyard, it's a different matter altogether. You see, right now, I'm better than all of those people. At least now when I wake up, often in a pool of my own creation, I can pull the needle out of my arm and know I'm better than some asshole pulling in $5.35 an hour. Ha ha! Good luck with that, sucker!

But now, come 2007, 700,000 nouveau [whatever's French for just above the poverty line] are going to be running around the streets of Manhattan waving their fat $7.10-an-hour checks in my face like the Park Avenue snobs they actually are deep down in their greedy hearts. They're going to parade down Broadway past the Strand in their handsome cabs, blaring Robert Palmer and tossing out handfuls of cash to onlookers.

They'll look in through the window of the store as they pass, lock eyes with me, and I'll know. And they'll know. Everyone will know. That I suck. Hard.

Drinking the Holiday Spirit(s)

I don't even have a fucking fridge

(click on image to enlarge)

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

The Kind of People Who Apply at the Strand

Below are a couple of the responses to Nancy's Craigslist ad, unedited, forwarded to me by "an interested party, completely unaffiliated with this blog."

Always wanted to be with a woman in your particular condition...Handsome
jewish gentleman...Very single, very discreet... live alone in the
Village...Health professional...Very giving... fun... interesting... well
educated... and warm...


In her "particular condition?" What, shrill, bile-spewing, and prone to feasting on the occasional fetus? Oh, that condition?

I'll spare this "gentleman" the gross indignity of posting his picture here, but suffice to say, he most certainly is not what I picture when I hear the name "G" tossed around. Next:

HI there,

we are a hot cpl in 20's (29 n 25), who would love to meet a nice lady fora
wild night of pure pleasure and exploring..

you posting drew our attention, as am sure we canhave some blasting times
together, nice bodies. discreet, clean, wild, ilove to havefun , and ......

(very beautiful woman with toned body and STRAP ON/ sexy with nice body and
thick 8' cock..She is a blonde/ he is tanned i assure you that we will
have some wonderful times

J & J

Yes, it's true. When I hear the phrase "blasting times", I immediately think "Strand Bookstore." Somebody flag these people's applications when they come in, and immediately move them to the front of the line. I think this arrangement could work out.

And let's assume that J doesn't mean his girlfriend is a beautiful woman with a thick, 8 foot cock. We'll just chalk that one up as grammatical imprecision.

However, I would advise leaving the "STRAP ON" at home most days, because when you work at the Strand, you're the only one getting fucked.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

How Odd

So I was just doing a little morning craigslist browsing, and somehow I found myself in the "casual encounters" section(!) and stumbled across this post that I think is a tad strange:

Woman of Dark Power seeks underling locusts for hot times - w4mw (12th & Broadway)


Nancy uses weird birds as croquet mallets

This post has absolutely nothing to do with the Strand

Monday, December 06, 2004

Week in Review: Least Overheard Customer Quote

"My, what a clean, wonderful store. I am a very polite and/or sane individual and don't smell the least bit like mothballs/deli-meat/feces."

1st Annual Strand Sucks Photo Caption Contest

We're giving the New Yorker a run for their filthy liberal money on this one. Here's how the contest works:

Look at the (very) poorly photoshopped picture below. Stare at it for at least twelve minutes-- really take it all in. Then, when you inevitably think up something that's actually halfway funny or cruel, write it down on a piece of paper. Then take that piece of paper, walk it up to the 3rd floor of the Strand, and staple it to Nancy's face.

Contest open to all; entries must be attached by December 31st.

Nancy shows a new worker around.

Saturday, December 04, 2004

It's the Most Wonderful Time

You'll be happy to know that the Strand Bookstore ( is offering a delectable holiday treat! No, not sodomy-- a radio reading of Dave Egger's Christmas classic "A Christmas Carol" by NYC's finest radio personalities you've never heard of!

However, WNYC has issued a subtle, yet significant warning-- if your radio broadcasts a slight fuzzy sound, do not be alarmed-- that is merely the souls of a thousand babies being absorbed through Nancy's pores for energy. The store doesn't run on Modest Mouse records, you dumb indie fucks.

It's a Good Thing I'm Drunk

.....because I really, really hate my fucking life. I also hate the fucking Strand. Goddamn that place fucking sucks.

Friday, December 03, 2004

Out for a drive

Thursday, December 02, 2004

Barnes and Noble Specials

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4. The Five People You Meet in Heaven Mitch Albom / Hardcover
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Time to Get Drunk

In fairness, I've actually had worse days than today. I didn't run into hate-gremlin Nancy "The only problem with owning a bookstore is that everybody expects you to read everything"* Bass, so my genitals are still more or less** intact.....but, as pertains to my last post, I was utterly thwarted in my every attempt to shoot up heroin in the bathroom, and entertain yet another fleeting high that passes for my life these days.

*New York Times, 11/5/03


I don't think there's any place on the planet where people defecate more often than they do at the Strand. Maybe it's something in the 1000-year-old water fountains (that, nonetheless, are refreshingly cold), but good lord, do I need another reason to hate that fucking place?

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Oh fuck.

I have to go to work again.

It might not be such a bad job if there was at least a decent bathroom to tie up & shoot smack in.

"Quiet, Old Man, or I'll bite your face off."

A List of Things I Could Have Bought With the Money I Made at the Strand Bookstore Today

-shoe (1)
-crappy Free Generic New York Subway Newspaper (13)
-rent* (*should be relocated to the "things my parents will have to spend today's money on" list)
-goldfish, live (4)
-goldfish, crackers (57)
-goldfish, mixed (12)
-Kix Cereal (9...kernels, or balls, or whatever denomination Kix comes in)
-books (Actually, reading is frowned upon at the Strand Bookstore. I've actually been threatened with termination, on more than one occasion, if I am caught reading a book. 18 miles of books, Jesus Christ-- it's the "water, water, everywhere..." business model over there. I'd hate to work at one of their brothels.)
-and believe me, they run those too.
-gin (nowhere near enough)

Where I work.

God, the Strand sucks

I mean, it really does. Honestly. If I were Nancy, I'd kill myself if I weren't such a misanthrope that I could purchase a suicide weapon or drug somewhere (because that would involve talking to someone without managing to bite their entire face off praying-mantis-style).

If I were Fred, I would strongly consider looking into a late-late-late-late-late-late-late-late-late-term abortion.
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