Monday, 28 February 2005

Sweeping dust covers under the rug

I find dust covers incredibly irritating.

You know, DUST COVERS. Those flappy, glossy paper thingies that wrap-around hardcover books and usually contains the synopsis and illustrated cover of the book itself.

I hate it when I'm reading a book and the dust cover keeps slipping down, coming off at one end, or flaps around when one is holding just one end of the book. It annoys me. I can't concentrate on the book when the dust cover is coming off half the time. And I hate it when I get oily fingerprints all over a dust cover that is made of glossy paper. I feel like I'm defiling the book or something.

What are dust covers for anyway? Do they keep dust off? Not really. Do they protect the book? Not when half the time it's slipping off. Sure, the cover of the actual book is usually quite dull, and it's the dust cover that makes the book attractive to buy in the first place. But couldn't they have made the dust cover a little less annoying?

I have two ways of dealing with annoying dust covers. One way is to just get rid of the thing. Not throw it away, mind you, but just take the damn thing off the book, and keep it somewhere save where it won't get oily fingerprints all over it. I have a whole shelf full of dust covers that I just took off a book I was reading and never bothered putting back.

I usually do this when the hardcover book is REALLY heavy, because in those cases, the dust cover just seems to slip off one end a lot easier. Probably because while holding the spine of the book to support it, the bloody covers will hang down, and as a result, the dust cover just slips off and you're left holding the spine of the book with two silly flaps of paper hanging down.

Another way is to wrap the book in such a way that it KEEPS the dust covers inside the plastic wrapping, and so that it won't come off. That way, it keeps the dust cover nice and shiny, and it won't slip off the covers.

However, the problem is, wrapping hardcover novels are such a HASSLE. You'd think it'd be the same as wrapping paperbacks, but it's not. The covers on hard-back novels tend to have a life of their own, flapping up and down when you're trying to wrap it properly, and the covers themselves are so thick you need a lot more plastic to go around them to make sure the wrapping STAYS there.

Bah. I still don't see why we need dust covers anyway. Not when all my books are left on the shelves so long that ALL of them have dust on them anyway, WITH or WITHOUT a dust cover....

No comments: