Friday, December 18, 2009

Sign here, and here, and here, and here, etc. . .

It's been said that a book is a present that you can open again and again. Cheesy, yes - but true. Obviously, I think that a book is just about the best gift you could possibly give or receive, but not all books are equal.

Indeed, Green Apple Books stocks plenty of new releases that would suit the stockings of passionate readers galore, but the difference between, "Oh neat, I've been curious about this tome" and "OMFG, I'm never letting this out of my sight!!!" may be as simple as the swipe of a pen. Enter the Signed Copy.

On a quick walk past our Main Store displays this afternoon, I spotted stacks of signed copies from some of literature's brightest lights: Jonathan Safran Foer, Sherman Alexie, Lorrie Moore, Michael Connelly and Paul Madonna, just to name a few. And there's no buyer premium here - these are all selling for the list price at most, and some are even discounted 20%. Throw in free gift wrapping (shhhh...), curbside delivery and maybe some Synthetic Owl Puke, and the lucky ones on your list will think you most considerate and unique!

And that doesn't even include some of the rare signed gems that we keep behind glass: Truman Capote, James Baldwin, Ralph Ellison, Nixon and more than 10 by Bukowski. Plus, I think that we've still got the Signed Limited of Crumb's Book of Genesis for the really nice (or naughtiest) one on your list, as well.

Of course, stock of these unique items is limited to quantity on hand, and may change in the time it took me to write this (it's pretty busy these days...) so come by early - we are opening at 9:00AM through December 24th. Or give us a call. We're here to help - it's what we love!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Clement Street parking or curbside pickup?

We know parking in San Francisco can be a challenge. While the Richmond is probably easier than some neighborhoods (North Beach, the Marina, Valencia Street. . . .), we know it's not easy. But you gotta get your holiday shopping done, right? So here's our advice:

Link1) Take Muni. The 38, 2, 1, and 44 all stop within a block of Green Apple. And the $2 fare is the same cost as an hour of metered parking. More info here.
2) Ride your bike. Get healthy, save on gas, and park right out front. Above is the fancy new rack just installed in front of the annex. This can help plan the least hilly route.
3) Order online. If you order your books (and shirts and gift cards), pay online, and choose "in-store pick-up," you can then pick up your order curbside. Just call us with your order # when you're a few blocks away and we'll meet you in front of the store.
4) Order online and have us ship your books. It doesn't cost much.
5) See this post for David LaBua's tips on parking near Green Apple.

Green Apple is, of course, best experienced in person, not online. And the hunt for parking always pays off when you find 5 more things you hadn't planned on buying, which allows you to cross 5 more names off your shopping list. Plus you can eat great food nearby, buy cake at Schubert's, grab a cup of coffee at Toy Boat or a drink at the 540 Club. And isn't it always better to get out in the world than live in front of you computer?

Schubert's Swedish Princess Cake

We hope to see you soon. . . .

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Cocktail anyone?

We carry a lot of things that most bookstores don't. Like this essential cheesemaking manual. And synthetic owl puke. Many of these unique items never make it to our web site, so the in-person browser truly is rewarded, beyond just seeing our many great books and people and masks and the nooks and crannies of the store.

Notably, we recently received a batch of quirky reprints of old cocktail guides. There are about a dozen of them, mostly $19.95 to $29.95.

These two are fine examples. The one on the left is from 1884. It's subtitled:
Fancy Drinks and How to Mix Them


clear and practical directions for mixing all kinds of cocktails, sours, egg nog, sherry cobblers, coolers, absinthe, crustas, fizzes, flips, juleps, fixes, punches, lemonades, and pousse cafes, together with complete directions and receipts for making all kinds of domestic brandies, beers, wines, cordials, extracts and syrups.
The one on the right is from Paris, 1927. Its whimsical illustrations, as implied by the cover, make this a perfect stocking stuffer for any modern tippler or your favorite bartender.

Above is our local pride, published in San Francisco in 1908 by "Hon. Wm. (Cocktail) Boothby. I'm not sure about all of these recipes. Like the Reviver on p.68. Hmm:
Into a large goblet, place two lumps of ice, a jigger of raspberry syrup, a wine-glass of milk and a pony of brandy. Fill the glass with sweet soda, stir and serve.
Maybe the Quencher ("a la the late Tommy Mulcahy") is more to my taste.
Take a mixing-glass, half filled with fine ice, throw in four spoonfuls of sour, two spoonfuls of bar sugar and one jigger of fine cognac. Break an egg into a separate glass, and if pleasant, throw into your mixer; shake well, strain into a large pint glass and fill up with a cool bottle of imported ginger ale. This makes one of the finest drinks known.
Perhaps with your gift of this book to someone you could include sour mix, sugar, cognac, ginger ale and an egg? We'll report back if we manage to give this one a try. Hopefully late this afternoon. . . .

Monday, December 14, 2009

Jingle Jams

Back in 2007 my buddy Matt and I tried to keep the Christmas festivities going all the way through the New Year, across the stretches of Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall with the intention of happily landing again on December 25th of '08, having celebrated three hundred and sixty five days of yule tide spirit. Well, we only made it till about the end February. At that point our humbug roommate threw one of our two Christmas trees out the window and smashed the other to bits in the living room. We were disheartened, sure, but probably a little more relieved than we admitted at the time. We hadn't really prepared ourselves for what we were getting in to and despite our efforts, the nonstop-ultra-holiday-party was a little difficult to keep up, especially when KNGY 92.7 (now sadly defunct) stopped playing techno Christmas song remixes for the year.

This year I'm taking it a little easier. I was actually kind of thinking about checking out what the Hanukkah thing is all about this year, being that the Jewish cooking section at Green Apple has been stealing my heart lately (L-A-T-K-E-S spells 'YUM!'), but still, there are still a few jingle jams that I can't help humming in my head as I wander around this fair city. Also happily enough, Green Apple is carrying a number of new and used Christmas CDs, often heartily discounted to the point that even Bob Crachit could dig up a clam or two bring one home to his family. To name a few:

If on a Winter's Night by Sting
Christmas in the Heart by Bob Dylan
Merry Christmas by Mariah Carey
The Christmas Album by The Jackson Five
A Colt .45 Christmas by Afroman
Home for Christmas by Hall & Oates

This one is for the lovers:

& here's one for the haters:

Happy holidays to everyone. See you 'round the hearth.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

More Holiday Gift Ideas: New Books At Used Prices...

AMMO's GONZO by famed American author and journalist Hunter S. Thompson. GONZO presents a rare look into the life of Thompson, whose groundbreaking style of "gonzo" journalism made him one of the greatest writers of his generation. Now, for the first time, his photographs and archives have been collected into a visual biography worthy of his literary legacy. With a heartfelt introduction by close friend Johnny Depp, GONZO captures a man whose life was as legendary as his writing.
NEW it costs you $39.95...
Green Apple's Price only $5.98!!

Rolling Stone Cover to Cover is a backstage pass to four decades of popular culture--a DVD ROM-based, searchable digital archive of every issue of Rolling Stone magazine from 1967 to 2007. Browse issues 1 through 1026 – over 98,000 searchable pages, exactly as they first appeared in print--every story, review, interview and even every ad.
NEW it costs you $125.00...
Green Apple's Price only $39.98!!
What do Marilyn Monroe, Bettie Page, Jayne Mansfield and Brigitte Bardot have in common? They are the most alluring sex symbols of all time--and they all graced the pages of Playboy in the 1950s. But Playboy wasn't only about beautiful women--it featured serious literature by equally serious writers like Hemingway, Kerouac, Bradbury, and Steinbeck. Playboy Cover to Cover--the 50s brings the magazine's entire groundbreaking first decade--every issue, every page, cover to cover--into one searchable digital archive.
NEW it costs you $100.00...
Green Apple's Price only $39.98!!

You can have your high-tone, filled-with-stunning-color-plates retrospectives of Goya and Picasso -- none come close to The Completely MAD Don Martin ("1,000 pages, 2 volumes, 1 slipcase, 25 pounds!"). This insanely special gift to the ages from Running Press has every piece of art that MAD's Michelangelo published during his 30-year run at the magazine, plus letters, sketches, photos and an intro by the "Far Side's" Gary Larson.
NEW it costs you $150.00...
Green Apple's Price only $49.98!!

Be sure to check out all the Remainders that Green Apple has to offer!!