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EXPLORING ALTERNATE BOOKSTORES IN A2
Random has unsexy porn name
By C.C. Song
For the Daily
In a college town such as Ann
Arbor, there are plenty of stores
where students can purchase text-
books, browse through a magazine
or just sit quietly and read. However,
in Ann Arbor, there are more than
just the huge chains to attract cus-
tomers, as smaller bookstores, with
their unique collections, have done
r just fine for themselves.
Through its giant glass window,
passersby can peer into a David's
Books - a tiny bookstore stacked
with books filling up shelves, pil-
ing up on the floor and stacked to
Although not as organized as any
of the chain bookstores, David's
Books has an air of nostalgia. The
current owner, Ed Koster, has been
running the store since the mid-
1980s and handled the customers at
the cashier as he talked about the
history of David's Books.
Koster explained that the book-
store was originally started by David
Kozubei in the 1970s. Kozubei was a
new-books dealer before he became
a used-books dealer and decided to
quit and handed the store to Koster
because he liked writing more than
running a store. Kozubei has done
reviews and commentaries on other
people's works, and he is currently
working on an anthology of poetry,
according to Koster.
The bookstore was originally
located on State Street, right above
Potbelly Sandwich Works, before it
relocated to its current location in
2003. Despite the new location, the
store kept its wide variety of selec-
"Most books are used books, but
occasionally some academic titles
are picked up new," said Koster.
Koster said there are fewer cus-
"People don't seem to like reading
as much as they used to, and there's
too much Internet shopping. People
just sit at home and browse through
the Internet," Koster said.
As a book lover, Koster said he
enjoys reading and running a book-
store. Occasionally, he said he is
entertained by eccentric customers
who call in to ask about some weird
David's Books carries a wide
selection of books, most of them
in recent titles and science fiction.
Most of the books are half of the new
book's price. The store also offers a
buy three. get one free deal.
A father rushed into Dawn Tread-
er bookstore to find his son with a
handful of books, and they both
went straight to the cashier. The son
passed the father the books, one by
one, and the father did not hesitate
to pay for any of them. The books
at Dawn Treader, like other used
bookstores, combine low costs with
a diverse selection.
Although Borders is right nearby,
Dawn Treader does not seem intimi-
By Doug Wernert
Daily Weekend Editor
The Michigan Daily: Hi, is Sarah
Random: Yeah! Who is this?
TMD: Hi, I'm calling from The Michi-
gan Daily and you've been selected to do
this week's Random Student Interview.
R: Oh, OK.
TMD: Do you got a few minutes?
TMD: And you want to do it?
TMD: This is good. All right, first off:
How's it going and how was your week-
R: It was good.
TMD: What did you do?
R: I went to my friend's house.
TMD: And what did you do there?
R: We hung around. We listened to
music and danced.
TMD: Oh, you danced? To what kind
R: Well it was a Puerto Rican party so
it was all Spanish music.
TMD: Oh, that's pretty cool. Was there
any Ricky Martin?
R: No, there wasn't.
TMD: OK. Well, whatever. It's good
that you danced. Let's get on to the real
interview. First question: what is your
favorite kind of Dum-Dum sucker?
TMD: You don't like any of the fan-
cier ones like root beer or butterscotch or
R: No, not really.
TMD: How many licks does it take to
get to the Tootsie roll center of a Tootsie
R: Not sure.
TMD: Haven't you ever seen the com-
R: I have.
TMD: Well, they tell you in the com-
R: Oh, three.
TMD: Do you think there's any sexual
connotation to it?
R: I don't think so. I never thought of
that, butI was a little kid when I saw the
TMD: Well, so was I, but now being
older, I think about that more. Like the
sexual part and stuff.
R: No, not me. I never really thought
TMD: If you were in porn, what would
your porn name be? You can take your
porn name by taking your middle name
and the street you live on.
R: Haha, it would be Stapercenti
R: Stapercenti Griggs. My mom's
maiden name is my middle name.
TMD: Oh really? I don't even know
how to spell that.
R: You can do Stape Griggs, I guess.
TMD: Stape Griggs?
TMD: Do you think that porn actress
could geta lot of men excited?
R: Not really.
TMD: Not with a name like that. What
if her name was something like Chande-
lier McPherson? Would that be better?
R: A little better, yeah.
TMD: Who was your favorite Batman
R: The Joker.
TMD: Did you find it weird that there
was both a Joker and a Riddler? Did you
really think there was a need for two?
R: They were different.
TMD: Yeah, but they pretty much did
the same thing.
R: Yeah, but the Riddler was funny and
the Joker was creepy so it's all good.
TMD: Yeah, that's true. Why do you
think Batman needed Robin?
R: All superheroes need a little side-
TMD: Yeah, but Superman didn't have
R: But Superman controlled the world.
I don't know.
TMD: But Batman controlled
R: Which was a freakishly scary town.
TMD: Yeah, it was. And for some
reason it looked a lot like New York City,
R: Yeah, it did a little bit. Mmm
TMD: Do you think "My Happy End-
ing" by Avril Lavigne is the ultimate
R: I don't know that one off the top of
TMD: You've never heard that song?
R: I think I have. I don't remember how
TMD: It's very bitter.
R: Do you want to sing it to me?
TMD: Sure, it's like (singing) You
were everything, everything ...
TMD: So you've heard it? Do you
think that's a good angry song?
R: Not really.
TMD: Why did you cut me off after
only singing about a line?
R: Haha, because I remembered it.
Would you like to sing the rest of it?
TMD: Not really. Are you insulting
my singing ability?
R: No, I just caught on to it.
TMD: I'm known as the white man's
R: That's awesome.
TMD: It is awesome. Do you ever
watch "Winnie the Pooh?"
R: Iused to.
TMD: Why didn't Winnie the Pooh
ever wear pants?
R: The same reason Donald Duck
didn't wear pants.
TMD: That is the perfect follow-up
answer, because they wore shirts, did they
not? But you don't see them wearing pants.
Don't you think that was kind of weird?
R: Yeah, it was a little creepy.
TMD: And why did Winnie the Pooh
have that dumb name?
R: Wasn't it the guy who wrote "Win-
nie the Pooh" ... his son's pet's name or
something? There's some history behind
TMD: Oh, I didn't know that. Remem-
ber Christopher Robin?
TMD: Why did he have such short
R: I don't know. I never realized that.
He hung out with a bunch of animals. He
didn't have any friends.
TMD: You notice he's wearing short
shorts and he's hanging around a bear
who doesn't wear pants ...
R: Haha, yeah. It's a crazy show.
TMD: This is like a bad Discovery
Channel special waiting to happen. Did
you have art class in grade school?
TMD: Were your projects ever good
enough to go on the wall?
R: Yeah, I think everyone's did.
TMD: See, at my school they were
very selective and my projects were rarely
good enough to go on the wall.
R: Well, that's sad.
TMD: It is sad, and I attribute that
to the fact that all the art projects either
involved folding something or using cot-
ton. Why did all art projects have those
R: Because they were cheap. You can
make anything with cotton and folding
TMD: Don't you think we should
thank Eli Whitney for inventing the cot-
R: We probably should.
TMD: Is he your favorite inventor?
R: At this moment, he is.
TMD: Well, what if it wasn't this
moment? Who would be your favorite
inventor? What about like ... Alexander
R: Wasn't it Carver who invented pea-
TMD: Yeah, I think so.
R: I'm a fan of him.
TMD: Yeah, me too. What do you
think the better skill is: breakdancing or
TMD: But what if you were being
attacked? Do you think you could ward
them off with breakdancing?
R: Yeah, did you ever see "Napoleon
Dynamite?" You just sidekick him.
TMD: What's so good about that
R: There's no point to it. It's just stupid
TMD: It's kind of like this interview
then, isn't it?
The Dawn Treader Bookstore on East Liberty Street sells first editions of many classic books.
dated by the chain store. The store
remains quite busy, full of a wide
range of customers.
Corby Gillmore, the current man-
ager of the store, has been managing
Dawn Treader for five years. His
father, Bill Gillmore, opened the
store about 30 years ago. Bill began
working in a bindery - a store
where books are bound - and even-
tually accumulated enough books to
open a bookstore.
Dawn Treader carries many used,
rare and out-of-print books. It also
has the first edition of many books,
including "On the Road," "One Flew
Over the Cuckoo's Nest" and "Fear
and Loathing in Las Vegas." Most
of their customers are students and
Corby said he enjoys running the
business. When asked about the
things that he liked the most about
running a bookstore, he replied, "the
selection of books I have to myself."
Afterwords, unlike other privately
owned bookstores, does not carry
used books. However, like the other
stores, it has many out-of-print, rare
and children's books.
"It's a defensive way to sell a liv-
ing. I couldn't sell anything other
than books," said Steve Kelly, the
owner of Afterwords. He has been
selling books since the 1960s but did
not open Afterwords until 1979.
Afterwords offers a wide selection
of children's' books - the predomi-
nant type of book in the store.
"We try to react to kids instead of
commercial," Kelly said.
Many of the store's customers are
families. However, while most book
shoppers are usually females, After-
words is the exception to the rule.
Other than children's books, they
carry many of history and non-fic-
tion books, including gardening and
Kelly gets books from sales rep-
resentatives and newspaper review-
ers. He also travels once every four
to five weeks to buy books at cheap
"I'm offering people fantasies,
escape, and entertainment. I try
to be part of the overall entertain-
ment," he said.
West Side Book Shop
West Side Book Shop and Joe
Platt, its owner and a Michigan
alumni, have been around Ann
Arbor for almost 30 years. The store
is reminiscent of the small shops
in Europe, filled with Jazz music,
dimmed yellow lights and out-of-
print, old books.
"I've always been interested in
books and got into book collecting.
I went to this bookstore on Fourth
Avenue in New York and decided to
open a bookstore (in Ann Arbor),"
. Most of the books are largely
about literature and the history of
Michigan. Platt also buys collec-
tions of different subjects and the
first edition of many books, includ-
ing "The Wapshot Chronicle" and
"Dealing or the Berkeley-to-Boston
Forty-Block Lost-Bag Blues."
As he enjoys his time as a book
seller, Platt plans the 30-year anni-
versary for the store in September.
He also shared the things he liked
about opening a bookstore. "I'm my
own boss, and I have my own library.
I enjoy being around books. People
ask me what it takes to open a book-
store. You have to enjoy handling
Bookstores and Hours
David's Books: 516 E. Williams St., (734) 665-8017. Mon.-
Sat. 1D am. to 9 p.m., Sun. noon to 9 p.m.
T Dawn Treader: 514 E. Liberty St., (734) 995-1008. Mon.-
Thurs. 11 am. to B p.m., Fri.-Sat. 11 am. to 9 p.m., Sun.
noon to 6 p.m.
Afterwords: 219 S. Main St., (734) 996-2808. Mon.-Wed.
10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Thurs.-Sat. 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sun. noon
to 8 p.m.
West Side Book Shop: 113 W. Liberty (734) 995-1891.
Mon. 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Thurs-Sat. 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sun.
noon to 5 p.m.
116 S.Main SI.
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