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Topic: Requestor Conditions - Have you kept your books from smoking?

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Subject: Requestor Conditions - Have you kept your books from smoking?
Date Posted: 6/11/2012 11:40 AM ET
Member Since: 11/11/2007
Posts: 96
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Daughter is purging and I have 27 books that were wishlisted. 

Just now I got a Requestor Condition that read "Non-smoking books please".   I was tempted to reply that I didn't really know what my books got up to when I wasn't around.  They could be smoking, drinking and otherwise gettting into trouble. cheeky

On a serious note, I chose to decline.  I happily sent books where the condition is that their most recent location was a non-smoking home, but the ambiguities on this one aren't just amusing but troublesome.  I don't know if the requestor wants books that don't smell like smoke, have never been exposed to smoke, or whether my home is non-smoking.

Also got a number of "mold" smell conditions for other books.  Most of these books are new and I am sure don't smell like mold to most people, but who knows?  I declined and wrote "I cannot tell how this book will smell to the requestor."  All of those just moved on to the next wisher.

Date Posted: 6/11/2012 12:05 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,283
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I don't smoke, so I accept all non-smoking RCs unless I think the book smells like smoke from a previous sender. Which is not really all that common anyway.

I also accept smell RCs unless I think the book smells.

I have a pretty good nose.

Never had a problem mailing to any RC. And, even if I were to someday have a problem, that would be one problem stacked against dozens of successful RC transactions. I would never let a single bad transaction change my PBS mailing behavior.

I just take RCs as they are written and don't try to read into them meanings that may or may not be there. People can write whatever they want, therefore, I generally tend to think that they have written exactly what they want. I would interpret "non-smoking books" as "send your books unless you smoke or unless you think they smell like smoke". Which is what I do anyway. Problem solved.

Last Edited on: 6/11/12 12:12 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 6/11/2012 12:05 PM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2008
Posts: 15,690
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I was tempted to reply that I didn't really know what my books got up to when I wasn't around.  They could be smoking, drinking and otherwise gettting into trouble. cheeky

LOL, Karen!

You did the right thing in declining given that the ambiguity of the request. Did you by any chance explain when you decline that you couldn't tell what she meant?

Date Posted: 6/11/2012 12:48 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,226
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I do exactly as Sara does. People can accept or decline as they wish, but I prefer to not make RCs more than they are at face value. I have an overly competent nose so I am never worried about smell RCs. I've never had a problem swap yet.

I don't see much ambiguity in the RC since they obviously don't mean that they don't want books that have been smoking themselves (and if they did mean that, then clearly all books would meet the RC).

Date Posted: 6/11/2012 1:23 PM ET
Member Since: 11/11/2007
Posts: 96
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D.G.:  When I declined the "non-smoking books" request, I informed the requestor that although no one in my home smoked, I didn't know if my books had "smoked or ever been in an environment where there was smoke".   I hoped they would see that the request could be better worded.


Date Posted: 6/25/2012 10:08 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2009
Posts: 4,581
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I have a problem with this smell rc too.  Sometimes books especially old books pick up odors they are not alway a bad odor but I never know what to put on those either.  I do ok most of the time smelling smoke, but its hard to decide other wise on other smells. I don't have a probelm sniffing my books for smoke smell from a previous owner since we are a no smoking home anyway but its when the say no mold smell or funny odors.  I mean come on some older books smell and its hard to tell if they have a mold smell sometimes books smell musky and if they don't have liquid damage and there is no obivous mold I assume the smell is old book.  I also have some older books that the pages were stained when they were made a red, or yellow and those to me start to get a funny sent after setting for the last 30 or 40 years,  and I noticed the glue starts to give off a musky sent on those too.  There is nothing we can do about those it just happens they were not damaged and have set in a no smoking home the whole time, were not exposed to water or other liquids they just smell funny.  You can't expect a used book to smell brand new.   I understand the no smoking home rule for the most part but I might decline if I can't pin down a smell on a book.  Usually I get annoyed when people order 10 yr or older books and request no funny smells.  I started declining the no funny smell rc and stating that I had no way of knowing what they considered to be a funny smell. 

I have a book that I got from my grandma that was published by avon in 1966 and has the red staining on the outside of the pages.  It sat on a bookshelf by her bed since the day she bought it untill 2 years ago when got diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.  This book however sat close to her vanity and seemed to have soked up the smell of oil of olay, and her old lady perfume (Chantilly Lace) it captures my grandmas sent perfectly.  It doesn't have damage from either product it has no stains just managed to sit close to where she got ready every day.  I probably wont ever get rid of it cause its smell has sentimental value to me but someone else my say it smells funny and not want it.

My Sisters husband works in a tire shop and throws his clothes on the floor of thier bed room by her book shelf.  The shope he works at sends the uniform to be cleaned each week so he just piles them up there on the floor till friday.  They always stink of tires, oil and other car smells.  She has give me several books that I've had to sit by a open window to let air out because they smelled like him and to me that smell is awful.  To her she is so used to the smell of oil she didn't even notice it and when I complained she just said she'd ask him not to throw his clothes there anymore.  So for her she wouldn't find it a funny smell but I did so its hard to say what will trip someone up on the funny smell one.  I passed that book back to her I didn't think anyone else would want to smell it.                  

Date Posted: 6/26/2012 9:00 PM ET
Member Since: 11/15/2008
Posts: 3,308
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lol.  I try to send to any RC that my books meet, but I have issues with smell ones, because chronic rhinitis means I have a weird sense of smell so I'm afraid of missing something. I generally decline those unless I have a new book that I'm sure hasn't absorbed any smells.  I would have done what you did.

I do try not to be too crazy about wording though. This was reinforced recently when I had a lady send me a neener neener response to my RC that, at the time, read something like "When wrapping the book please add some type of plastic covering as I have a walking mailman.  Thanks for sharing your book!"  The decline resonse I got was, "I don't wrap my books. I put them brand new plastic envelopes."  I changed "wrapping" to "packaging" just in case the word was needlessly confusing (though I suspect the word was not the issue :))

Date Posted: 6/28/2012 4:36 PM ET
Member Since: 1/27/2009
Posts: 46
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I just got one where the requestor is not willing to recieve books "...if they are not English." Most of my books are American, I've got a few Canadians, but English?


I know I'm quibbling over grammar, but it made me smile for a moment.