As one who has spent decades haunting used book stores, I may feel their loss more than most. Just a handful of years ago, there were probably 20 used book stores dotting the little burgs between San Francisco and Santa Rosa - today there may be 2 or 3. Sure, you can find all the used books you will ever need on-line, but where's the fun - or danger - in that? I could say more, but let's let Christopher Ross take it from here. From Mishima's Sword:
"For a bookworm a second-hand or antiquarian book fair is an exciting event. . . The space was crammed with shelves and tables groaning with tomes and the rooms thronged with browsers. I rolled up my sleeves and set out to seek for treasure - for that, I am sure, is the motivation of the true bookworm.
After only a short while I began to feel at odds with what I was doing. I dislike browsing whenever anyone else is trying to look at the same shelf. I can scan a large bookshelf very accurately in seconds and become impatient if someone is taking too long in a slot I wish to occupy. I do not like standing too close to a stranger (martial arts training focuses on maintaining a safe distance at all times, a practice known as ma-ai) and become indignant if anyone indicates that they resent the way I am behaving, perhaps by trying to block my browsing or in some other way behaving proprietorially towards the books we are both looking at. It is a very mild form of intolerance, even of violence. I sometimes fantasise doing something very nasty to an innocuous bibliophile who is, mercifully, unaware of my growing sense of browser rage."
Anyone else remember feeling that way?