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Topic: Advice?

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Subject: Advice?
Date Posted: 12/3/2007 5:30 AM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2007
Posts: 1,334
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This morning I woke up to a request for an older book.   No problem, I have the book.  The requestor requests only books from a smoke free environment.   Well, I picked this book up used, years ago, from a UBS.    Since its been in my home, its been in a smoke free environment.   But I cannot attest to where its been, before that.   What can I do? 

Date Posted: 12/3/2007 5:45 AM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2007
Posts: 594
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Send her a PM before you accept the request.

Date Posted: 12/3/2007 6:47 AM ET
Member Since: 3/13/2006
Posts: 2,024
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I believe you have to accept the request before you have the ability to PM.  This is what I do in that situation.  I smell the book (and have DH smell the book too!).  If neither of us smell any smoke, then I accept the request with the last possible mailing date and I PM the person that my home is nonsmoking and I can't smell any smoke on the book, but I can't attest to whether it's been in a smoking environment in the past.  Then I ask the person to let me know if she still wants the book.  I also say that if I don't hear back by x date I will go ahead and send since I believe it meets conditions.

So far, no one has ever told me NOT to send the book.



Last Edited on: 12/3/07 6:48 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/3/2007 6:57 AM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 13,347
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Since you are not a smoker, you probably would be sensitive to the smell of it.  Does it smell like smoke to you?  If not, I would send it.

Date Posted: 12/3/2007 8:10 AM ET
Member Since: 10/23/2007
Posts: 15
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"Since you are not a smoker, you probably would be sensitive to the smell of it."

See i would have thought this also, as a non smoker myself, but the following makes me rethink this.

I personally can smell smoke on a smoker as soon as they walk in a room. And my DH, if he comes home from visiting a smoking friend, I can smell it on him, as soon as he walks in the door. If I visit a place where others smoke, it attaches to my hair, and as soon as I leave I can still smell it , and it "bugs" me, until I shower and wash my hair. (no condemnation to those who smoke, just my personal sensitivity to the smell)

I purchased a book brand new from a christian book store. I read it and kept it in my home for a year or two. No one in my home smokes (or has ever smoked). We do not have a wood burning stove or fireplace. We donot allow smokers to smoke inside our home, never have.

A poster asked for the book from a smoke free home, (for health reasons) which I qualify for. I sent the book, wrapped in a plastic covered bubble wrap mailer (new) - and the receiver said both her and her son sniffed the book and it STRONGLY smelled of cigarette smoke.

How can this be? I don't smoke, never have. No one in my home does, and never has. The book was never loaned to anyone, never left my home while I owned it, and was purchased brand new. I have always been able to easily smell smoke on others, as it is distinctive. So how can a new book smell of smoke, and I can't smell it?

The whole thing confused me. And makes me wonder on how to handle something like this, when I know the book was not in a smoking environment. Even if the postal carrier smokes, it seems a plastic covered bubble envelope would protect the book? How should this be handled?

I now have a ding on my account, yet I don't feel I did anything "wrong", but I also am sorry the receiver was unhappy.

 

 



Last Edited on: 12/3/07 8:29 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/3/2007 8:28 AM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2007
Posts: 1,334
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Vicki,

 Thank You for reading my post.  IMO, you were unjustly "dinged."   It you know a books history because you bought it new, and no one in your home smokes, how in the world is it possible that it smelled of smoke?   In my case, I picked this book up used, and have no idea of its history.    I don't smell smoke, DH (sensitive nose) doesn't smell smoke.    But, can't say for sure.

Betsy

Date Posted: 12/3/2007 9:01 AM ET
Member Since: 10/23/2007
Posts: 15
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I guess my question was  about the commont/thought - "Since you are not a smoker, you probably would be sensitive to the smell of it.". Which I see noted on here often, and also believed. (seemed a good idea to me)

Yes, its true you don't know the history of your book, and that does make a difference, from that aspect.  But is the comment that "being a non smoker, you would be able to smell the smoke" or your DH would, accurate?

See I don't know either. Just wondering if using that as a guide is acceptable by users of this site. Which many people do. I am new here myself, so trying to undferstand options, since I do also have used books from other sources.

Of course PMing the receiver (before sending anything) that the book is from an unknown environment, and that you and DH, can't smell a smoke odor is a wise move. Then the receiver can decide, if they want to risk it. I would think that would be an acceptable option? But based on my experence, maybe not.....

I now always try to do that on ANY book that may have ANYTHING I or a receiver may question. (minor things, like a few small marks inside text sections (not heavy underlining), wavy pages that are not water damage, some spots on pages etc - but still within PBS standards of send-able) 

But sometimes you don't get a reply back, and then I am unsure what to do. In the past I just sent the book, and then PM the receiver again, letting them know I PMed them before sending the book and missed the reply, but if they have an issue to let me know. I really don't want someone to be unhappy with their exchange either.



Last Edited on: 12/3/07 9:29 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/3/2007 9:45 AM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2007
Posts: 5,526
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I would send the book since you know the environment of the book now and for the last few years.

Vicki, it is very possible that if your postal carrier smoked that it did make its way through the plastic and such.  Don't worry about the "ding" because you know that it was not a smoky book....if it reeked you would have known so something had to have happened in transit.  what I have no idea, but something.

Date Posted: 12/3/2007 9:51 AM ET
Member Since: 10/23/2007
Posts: 15
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ahh...so if the book has been in a smoke free home for a few years or so, AND does not smell of smoke. Then it does qualify as from a "smoke free" enviroment and is sendable in that manner, for those who request such? 

This is of course assuming the reciever has not specifically qualified that books be from a known smoke free history? In which case you would still need to reply to their request that past is unknown but book is non smelly?

Date Posted: 12/3/2007 9:51 AM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2005
Posts: 10,718
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Vicki I've had enough complaints about smoky books from my non-smoking house that I finally started mailing all my books from the post office instead of my mailbox, because I'm sure it IS my mailman causing the problem. He has a very long route, and he chain smokes while driving. I know everything we get in the mail absolutely reeks to the point where sometimes I have to let things sit outdoors for a day to lose the smell. However because it was out of my control that he smokes, I refused to refund credits for smoky books because I considered it the fault of the post office. I haven't had any complaints since I stopped mailing directly from my home.

I will ask people with no smoking conditions if they are OK with wood smoke though because we do have a wood burning stove and we have had visitors tell us that they can smell it on their hair and clothes after they leave our house.

Date Posted: 12/3/2007 9:56 AM ET
Member Since: 10/23/2007
Posts: 15
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ah, well all my books are mailed direct from the post office actually, Now that I think about it. So it was not my carrier, but could be one anywhere in the route on the other end I guess. 

I don't mail many packages from my box, as I am very rural, and would hate for the post person to have to carry all my packages plus all his other stuff in his car. :)  And I always worry I misweighed them or some such.

But this comment caught my eye - "However because it was out of my control that he smokes, I refused to refund credits for smoky books because I considered it the fault of the post office." 

Thats a good point. if you have done all you can reasonably do, then you did your part.

 

--Betsy, sorry to hijack your thread, It just seemed our questions were in some ways related, and I wanted info also on this--



Last Edited on: 12/3/07 9:58 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/3/2007 10:06 AM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2005
Posts: 1,442
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Vicki,

I, too, think you were unjustly dinged.  I'm wondering if perhaps their mailman smokes?  Your story is going to make me think twice before accepting a no-smoking condition, even though my home has always been smoke-free.

 

Date Posted: 12/3/2007 10:11 AM ET
Member Since: 10/23/2007
Posts: 15
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debs - that's sort of where I am at now. I am just not sure what else one can do to "qualify" for sure.....

I certainly don't want one to receive a book they are unhappy with, or can't read because of health issues. And it is reasonable to have specifics for these type of things. But on the other hand, whats a sender to do to prevent a problem....or can/should one do anything else?

Maybe not based on other comments I think. And it seems a credit refund should not be done in my case. So I think I understand now. Thanks!



Last Edited on: 12/3/07 10:53 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/3/2007 11:59 AM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,201
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Vicki - I would almost bet that the person who received the book has a smoker for a postal carrier. That is usually how books that come from a smoke-free environment arrive so stinky. I really wish that smoking would be banned from all postal vehicles. That stinks that you got dinged for a situation like that. 

I have a bunch of books that a smoker gave me about 8-10 years ago. I am very sensitive to smoke and do not sense any problems with the books at this point.  I only PM if the RC sounds like they are very sensitive to any history of smoke. 

Date Posted: 12/3/2007 11:59 AM ET
Member Since: 7/7/2006
Posts: 15
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I had a mail carrier who smoked heavily and all our mail came reeking. As I am highly allergic, I complained to the Post Office and the problem went away. If you know your carrier is a chain smoker, you should report it.  He is probably violating the health laws and maybe a PO regulation as well.

Date Posted: 12/3/2007 12:00 PM ET
Member Since: 7/14/2007
Posts: 8,942
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I wrap mine in cling wrap before I put the paper wrapper on, just for the added protection from water and odor.  Even though I have a non-smoking household, and a very sensitive nose, I will turn down conditions that state "I will not accept a book that has been in a smoking environment."   I buy some of my books used, some new, and get some from PBS.  So unless I can remember that the book was bought new, I have to turn down that request.  For some reason, the books I've gotten those requests on have been snapped up pretty quickly anyway, so no worries there.

Date Posted: 12/3/2007 7:34 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2007
Posts: 1,334
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Problem solved.   I PM'd the requestor and explained the situation.  She wants the book.  She would just prefer not to have a book that has been sitting in a smoking environment.   That it is used, and history unknown is OK.  She was very nice, and thanked me for checking with her.   I will mail the book, asap.  

Thanks, everybody.