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Topic: People with smoking related Req. Conditions need to be specific

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Subject: People with smoking related Req. Conditions need to be specific
Date Posted: 3/23/2008 2:29 PM ET
Member Since: 11/26/2006
Posts: 221
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I just turned down a request with a RC re: A smoking envionment.

The book was published in 1994..14 years ago. Can I swear that it was never in a home of someone who smoked? NO....(It actually looked like new except for a bumped corner. )

They could state: In a present smoking envionment or smells smoky or whatever- but be specific. I will not chance losing my hard earned credit.


Last Edited on: 4/4/08 12:39 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/23/2008 4:46 PM ET
Member Since: 12/31/2007
Posts: 240
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or your book Sheila or the postage to send

Date Posted: 3/23/2008 8:41 PM ET
Member Since: 3/6/2008
Posts: 341
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I've been thinking about this as well.. When someone sends a condition about smoking how am I supposed to know if it was ever in a smoking home? I do not smoke but that doesn't mean that the person I got the book from before me didn't smoke. You know? I was curious about this as well.

Date Posted: 3/23/2008 9:03 PM ET
Member Since: 10/2/2007
Posts: 311
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I always feel guilty when I say I can't meet this condition, especially if it's a wish list book.  But I don't want to take the chance that someone will find a book to have an odor even if I don't find one.  Its too subjective for me.

Date Posted: 3/23/2008 9:10 PM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2007
Posts: 2,693
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that is why my RC for smoking environment says the following...

Please due to allergies I cannot receive books that are currently in a smoking home (you don't have to know the history...if no one smokes in your house then yes, I want the book)

Date Posted: 3/23/2008 9:36 PM ET
Member Since: 1/25/2007
Posts: 6,567
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Smart move, Christy.

I too have bad allergies and sinus problems. But after what I've heard about people getting turned down for so many book requests I've never had any RC's.

But I admit I'm annoyed when I do get a book that smelles bad with smoke.

Just a few days ago my kids were thrilled to get some books. A little while later my 6yr old son was chasing his sister around the room saying "Smell this book! Smell the book!" Once I got ahold of it I could smell a strong smokey smell.


Date Posted: 3/23/2008 10:04 PM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 13,347
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You are absolutely correct.  Being specific is the only way to go.  It leaves no room for personal interpretation and a future problem.

Date Posted: 3/23/2008 11:57 PM ET
Member Since: 7/2/2006
Posts: 87
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Also, if you're allergic to smoke and pets, please don't put something like "Please, no books that come from a pet household", and then get stinky with me when I ask if you're also allergic to smoke and it turns out you are. Also put that in your conditions.

Thank you.

Date Posted: 3/23/2008 11:59 PM ET
Member Since: 1/13/2008
Posts: 1,728
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christy, i like the way you word that, i may have to use it too. if you dont mind

Date Posted: 3/24/2008 12:33 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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If it says currently in a non-smoking home then I accept. If they want me to do a sniff test and provide the book's history-I decline. I have a horrible sense of smell and what smells fine to me, might reak of cigarette to someone else. 

Date Posted: 3/24/2008 7:26 AM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2007
Posts: 2,693
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Stephanie feel free to copy it because I'm sure I lifted some parts of it off someone else along the way.

Date Posted: 3/25/2008 8:29 AM ET
Member Since: 3/14/2007
Posts: 2
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I have birds but they aren't usually around my books. Do you think that's something that should be mentioned?

Date Posted: 3/25/2008 9:18 AM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2007
Posts: 2,693
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Celeste, I might would put that in my signature line but, I wouldn't PM people and ask them.  I have known people that are allergic to bird dander and you'd be amazed how much it gets into things....like I said I'd probably put it in my signature line but that is all.

Date Posted: 3/25/2008 10:12 AM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2007
Posts: 5,526
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exactly!  I can't swear for the previous history but know my house is non-smoking.  I also ask for books that are currently in a non-smoking household and I would be glad to do a sniff test but considering I don't like smoky books I doubt any of mine are that way because I would have gotten rid of them or something along the way.  reading a book that smells like smoke is NOT fun!

Subject: removing smoke smells
Date Posted: 4/1/2008 10:30 PM ET
Member Since: 2/26/2008
Posts: 8
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While I do not have an allergy to it, I certainly do not like reading a smoky book.  I have found a wonderful, though not 100% perfect, way of removing smoke smells.

One book I received was awful, so I flipped the pages while pouring baking soda into the pages.  I stuck the book into a paper bag (not plastic, the thing needs to air out) and, since I don't have a porch, I stuck the book-in-bag in between my double window.  I left it there for 3 days.  While reading the book, I just blew the excess powder out.

1. The book still had a faint smoke smell.  I have no idea if this would still irritate people's allergies.  It was TONS better than before, but you couldn't claim it was perfect.

2. I didn't leave the book out when it would rain.  Check your weather forecast to make sure leaving the book in the window doesn't leave you with a soggy story!

Another idea I have, but did not test because of the liquid involved, was to spray it with a product like Febreeze.  I haven't tested it yet because I am afraid it might "water" damage the pages.  Maybe only test this on a book you wish to keep?

Anyway, I hope these ideas help!

Date Posted: 4/1/2008 11:43 PM ET
Member Since: 7/5/2007
Posts: 2,215
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After getting a reject from someone who bought a book at a used store and didn't know the history, I changed mine to:

I cannot receive books that are currently in a smoking environment.  

Books that you do not know the history of, received second hand (preferably from a nonsmoker) or bought from a used bookstore are ok.   Books that smell faintly will not aggrivate my allergy to insensibility.  If it reeks, please do not send it.


Before I had put the smoking RC in, I had received a couple of smokey books.  A trip into a baggie with one of those "flow through" boxes takes care of it.  [Although I had one that spent about 6 months in the baggie.  Peeyew.



Date Posted: 4/2/2008 1:59 AM ET
Member Since: 2/6/2008
Posts: 91
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Another idea I have, but did not test because of the liquid involved, was to spray it with a product like Febreeze.  I haven't tested it yet because I am afraid it might "water" damage the pages.  Maybe only test this on a book you wish to keep?

Tess, I would not spray the books with anything in case the next requestor is sensitive or allergic to scents. It's just not a good idea to ADD scent to a smoky book because then it would just smell like, well, like scented smoke. :)  I would just stick it in a ziplock bag  and maybe put a sheet or two of crumpled newspaper at the bottom to help absorb the smell.

You could take a mateless sock (or cut off a pair of pantyhose at the knee) and fill it about a third of the way, Tie or tape the top shut and stick it in the bag with the book so you have less powder to deal with when you read it. Heh, if you are crafty and want to get fancy, maybe you can line the bottom of a large plastic box with an old pillowcase filled with baking soda or unscented kitty litter. Velcro the opening so that you can replace the litter/soda. Then just put all of your PBS books in there before snapping on the lid. :) It would make a great waiting area for books that are on your PBS bookshelf.

Date Posted: 4/4/2008 8:41 AM ET
Member Since: 9/25/2006
Posts: 724
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I once got bit by similar requestor conditions, the RC was for a book that didn't smell of smoke, no one in my family is a smoker, so I shipped it out. The requestor ended up jumping my case for sending her a smokey book. I replied that I bought it used, we don't smoke and I didn't smell anything.  I now decline all similar RC's for this reason. Being specific in this situation is quite helpful, because it's impossible to know where all your books have been.

Date Posted: 4/4/2008 10:20 AM ET
Member Since: 1/24/2008
Posts: 7,202
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I recently shipped ou a book with the RC of not coming from a smoking home. I smoke but only smoke outside on the porch (I can not stand a home that smells like smoke.. I know it sounds weird coming from a smoker!) So I accepted and e-mailed the requester letting her know this info and had a coworker who hates smoke check it out via a "sniff" test and sent it out. It all ended well. I thought about declining but a. I needed the credit and b.I would have hated to have someone miss out on a book that I was confident was fine. I think I am going to do this again in the future if I get another request with this RC and leave it up to them to decide.

Date Posted: 4/4/2008 5:19 PM ET
Member Since: 3/29/2008
Posts: 192
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I'm rather new, and this thread as brought up a question.  I don't know anyone with smoking allergies so I haven't been able to ask them, and my home is smoke free, but does incense smoke have a similar effect on people?  I don't burn incense in the room I keep my books in, but it is in the house and well...  does incense smoke rile up people's allergies in much of the same way?  If so I'll need to start mentioning it or something.

Date Posted: 4/6/2008 2:29 PM ET
Member Since: 3/20/2007
Posts: 142
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I used to have a requestor condition regarding smoky books that read: Please no books from a currently smoking household.  :-)

I ended up turning off my requestor condition because I almost missed out on a knitting book I had on my wish list because the woman's husband smokes.  Turns out the books weren't in an area of the house where he smokes and since this isn't a book that I would have my nose buried in the pages for days, I asked her to go ahead and send it please.  So many of my wish list books are craft books and are on auto request, that I decided I'll just turn the RC on when I request a mass market paperback.

Date Posted: 4/6/2008 2:39 PM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2005
Posts: 827
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Yikes I just got dinged for sending a damaged book bcs it arrived smelling of smoke.  She didn't have RCs (I checked) and though it wasn't exposed to smoke here I did get it from PBS so maybe it got smokey before me.   I will have to be more careful to smell books I got from PBS before I send them out, even to those with no RCs.  I just wrapped this one and sent it. 

Now I don't know WHAT to do!   I suppose do a big ol whiff test for every single book I didn't get brand new. 

Well it's only happened once to me and I have sent a lot of books so I guess I won't panic.  I did refund her credit.

Date Posted: 4/6/2008 2:52 PM ET
Member Since: 3/20/2007
Posts: 142
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Liese, as much as I detest smoky smelling books myself, the Book Condtion Guidelines don't say anything about smelly books.  Therefore, you weren't obliged to return a credit.  I think I would have politely let the person know that you don't smoke and neither does anyone in your home and you hadn't noticed the smell of smoke yourself.  You could also politely add that the receiver might want to add Requestor Conditions if she's very concerned about smoky smelling books. 

Date Posted: 4/6/2008 3:12 PM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2005
Posts: 827
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Thanks, Stephanie.  I felt bad bcs she said she threw the book away.  And I have credits so I didn't need that one.  I couldn't imagine she was making it up, and I didn't want her to lose the credit.    But I hope she does make RCs.  I did mention them in my PM.

Subject: Smokey
Date Posted: 4/6/2008 3:16 PM ET
Member Since: 9/24/2005
Posts: 151
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I would not feel bad turning down a book b/c of a RC.  I jsut go by what the RC says.  No biggie.  I don't try to interpret.

What I don't get is putting a condition in a signature line.  Unless you're a poster then how would a person ever see that?