Beware Of Log

…they couldn’t afford a dog

The Doclopedia #583

Average Janes: Jane Ngembe, Teacher

I had only been teaching here for a few months when the meteors fell. We saw the one that hit in the Congo, because we had taken the children up on the mountain just over there for a picnic at the weather center. At just before noon, the meteor went streaking across the sky and hit just over the horizon. We saw the strange blue light and could see the glittering in the air. Of course, it would be a week before we learned about the Giant Effect.”

Oh, yes, certainly. I was born here in Rwanda, but educated in America. I came back home with the Tempest Foundation’s African Education Team. I love teaching. No, I am not married yet, but I am engaged to Simon, whom you met when you arrived.”

So, as I said, despite the meteors falling in what…204 places worldwide?…we did not get the first reports of gigantism for a week, when those chimpanzees took out all of those Congolese rebels. Soon after that, of course, the Giant Effect was all you heard about, whichever media you checked. I have been to Northern California, so I can imaging the way people must have felt after the Chico/Paradise strike. All of those gigantic people, suddenly 30 feet tall in only a few days. And the giant skunks and coyotes! Oh my!”

But it wasn’t any better anywhere else, was it? My lord, the strike in Zimbabwe created 150 elephants that are larger than dinosaurs! And everywhere, the huge insects! We have seen an ant from the Congo and it was three inches long! I’m told the Mexican strike affected millions of scorpions and tarantulas. I guess it is good that the entire ecosystem around a strike grew, so as to have giant plants, too. To be honest, I would very much like to see the Giant Effect Redwoods in the California Coastal Giant Zone. Imagine, trees nearly 1,400 feet tall! Then, just offshore, the Giant Effect Gray Whales that are nearly 250 feet long!”

I must get back to class soon, but please do keep in touch and do send us some videos from Australia. I’m sure the children would love seeing the giant camels and kangaroos.”

The Doclopedia #584

Average Janes: Jane Walker, Bookseller

Hello! Welcome to The Happy Bookworm! I’m Jane, the one you talked to earlier on the phone. Pleased to meet you. Would you like some coffee or tea?”

Yes, this place has been in the family since 1845, when great-great-grandpa Elias founded it. Back then, it was just J. Walker, Bookseller. The named changed in 1968 when my aunt Sheila took over. Me, I’ve been running the place since 1998, when Sheila retired. Oh yes, New York City girl, born & bred. Married a Texas boy who came to the big city to work as a detective in the Supernatural Services Unit. Four kids, all in high school or college now, so please, buy plenty of books after the interview, ok? Hahaha.”

We sell just about everything here: new, used, magazines, old maps, old photos, a limited number of old comic books and even some old roleplaying games. The place has expanded five times over the years, so we are now covering a quarter of a block and three stories, not counting the basement storage area. First floor for new books of all sorts and used fiction. Yeah, very large science fiction/fantasy area over there. Second floor is used everything else and the third floor id rare books and the Special Section, which I know you’re dying to hear about.”

Yeah, the Special Section is…Wally, get out of the way and let the man by! Sorry, can’t have bookstore cats due to allergies, so we have bookstore dogs. Five of them, of which Wally is the oldest at 11. Still in pretty good shape for an older Lab, but a big old lazybones. Anyway, the Special Section has books of interest to Supernaturals, Aliens and students of both. The Supernatural section is almost as big as the About section, which is pretty amazing considering that Humans outnumber Supernaturals by 200,000 to one. The Aliens section is way smaller, but then, they’ve only been here 80 years and both the Geepzar and the Ith-Hul-Quemmen are not known for writing lots of books Humans or Supernaturals can understand.”

I’d say our best Supernatural customer is The Werewolf Lord. He’s a big Supernatural history buff. Of course, he also loves a good mystery, which is why I have about 50 books set aside for him. Our best Alien customer is Feeevek Hoolnar, who comes in about once a month to stock up on hero pulp reprints and western novels, although he seldom passes up a good collection of Golden Age science fiction. He’s also one of the few Geepzar who get Human humor and he’s big fan of Twain, Benchley and Wodehouse.”

Trouble? Not really, although the Vampires and the Fae are barely tolerant of one another, should they meet. Both the Werewolves and the Sasquatch are models of civility and good manners. Better than most of our Human customers, really. No, no, we don’t get many Wizards or Witches here. They tend to prefer their own shops.”

No more questions? Well then, feel free to look around and if you buy four books, the fifth is 50% off. And if a couple of rascally looking terrier mixes start following you, their names are Butch and Sundance and they’re just hoping you have a treat.”

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