April 01, 2006


While my sister and mother always tell me that they feel the urge to defecate once they enter a bookstore, I on the other hand want to take up residence inside. One, bookstores are a veritable trove of literary treasures waiting to be rediscovered and most of these have bargain bins where you can find a rare gem. And for those who have the mongoose instinct of digging up things, looking under a mountain of discounted volumes is a strong motivation. However, some people's pleasurable obsession for hunting books can transform into what I'll call "Bibliositis."

Bibliositis is the inflammation of the satiety center in one's hypothalamus and symptoms are characterized by a sudden onset of manic euphoria, tachycardia (rising heatbeat), salivation and phalangeal tremors, all precipitated by the sight of bargain books and aggravated by more bins of discounted books. This is followed by book-induced nystagmus, the disappearance of any self-control, and loss of temporal consciousness. Depending on the susceptibility of the patient, the inflammation usually ends with gradual depression after paying for the books, and chest tightness if he/she sees that the book is a dud.

This psychosomatic disorder is prevalent among high-school and college graduates, more in females than in males, and seen among bloggers and pop culture reviewers. Personal history includes personal libraries in patient's homes. Family history includes other family members afflicted with Bibliositis.

Currently, there is no definitive cure for Bibliositis. Only constant observation and counselling are recommended at this stage. Electric shock therapy is presently being researched as a Bibliositic cure at the National Institure for Mental Health, but so far, test subjects have only shown to exhibit adverse reactions like coprolalia and dyslexia. The Philippine Medical Association is appealing to Book Sale and Powerbooks to put up warning signs on their shop's entrances and on their cashiers, but they have yet to receive the shop's formal response.

This lifestyle disease has struck several bloggers as of late like Jessica Zafra in her latest entry, blogsite of Gigi Goes Gaga, and even John Nery, an editor of Philippine Daily Inquirer.

The question is: Do you have Bibliositis??

Literary News:
1. Powerbooks is having a warehouse sale on March 16-April 1, 2006; 10am to 7pm at # 25 Brixton st. Capitol Subdivision, Pasig City. If you are coming from Shaw blvd., take a left turn to Reliance st. then turn right to Brixton st. (it's the street parallel left to Pioneer st.). there is a BIG Powerbooks signage at the gate. More bargain books, bigger discounts!

2. Find of the Year:

Penguin's "Red Classics" offers a fairly good range of old and modern classics at a reasonable price. While these are being sold in the UK at its original price, here in Manila you can avail of a copy at Powerbooks for 60% off the calculated price and 20% more if you buy it during weekend sales. If you'll compare them with other editions of the same title, more often than not you will be surprised at how expensive others are. For example, Penguin's "Bridge of San Luis Rey" costs only P220 ($4.40) on regular days and P180 ($3.60) during sales. That against Perennial Classics edition which costs more than P800 ($16), it's still a steal. But if you can find one under BookSale's jungle of used books, then so much the better.

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