and the frenzy continues

Last night, I was peacefully enjoying browsing at Fully Booked Gateway, oblivious to everyone around me, when my browsing was suddenly interrupted by sounds of girls twittering, gushing, and basically exclaiming in delight. I looked up and saw what they were all a-flutter about. Some guy entering the store wheeling in boxes of books. “Sandali lang ho, che-check-in pa namin ito,” the guy said, as the small gaggle of people (mostly girls) parted to make way for him as he wheeled the boxes towards the back of the store, watching adoringly as he passed by.

It just took me a couple of seconds to realize what was going on: a new delivery of the Twilight books has just arrived. Earlier, I overheard a guy asking customer service about the “Twilight saga” and he was told to wait for fresh new copies that will be delivered by 7:30 PM. I remembered thinking, oh, so it’s really not just girls going all crazy about those books – then forgot all about it, until all the sounds of female excitement.

It was all too amusing. I was grinning like an idiot watching it all. I realized that I was witnessing a mini cultural phenomenon. I gave up the browsing and just hung about the edges of the crowd observing things, even snapping photos with my phone cam (photos which I can’t upload here because I can’t find my phone-to-computer cable. Drats). I did keep my finger on my place in the Nora Ephron book I was browsing, lest I be mistaken to be one of the couldn’t-wait Twilight fans, he he. I’ve read the series –the first three anyway – after a fashion, skimming through the pdf versions, but I never really felt the need to get myself real copies, much less hang about at bookstores waiting for the books’ arrival. I sort of did that for the Eraserheads reunion concert, but that was different. Magkakaubusan talaga nun e.

The crew started clearing away all the books displayed on a table, plus an entire shelf top to bottom, to make way for the new arrivals. The poor things were unceremoniously piled and stuck away somewhere, as evidently the Twilight series require a lot of shelf space. Before the books could be displayed, however, some sort of signal or announcement suddenly drove the waiting crowd to dash across to the other end of the store where the Twilight boxes were placed, and a little commotion ensued as books were distributed straight out of the boxes. I was left standing open-mouthed at the front area for a few minutes, then roused myself and followed the throng to take even more pictures. The general make-up of the two dozen or so crowd: high school to twenty-something girls, and high school boys. I don’t think there was a twenty-something guy, except for one who was accompanying his girlfriend.

A girl clutching three huge books to her chest, one of the early ones to grab a set, was instantly on the phone to her friend reporting on the achievement. “Wala pa daw yung Twilight bukas pa daw ng umaga,” she said. Hah. So she didn’t even have the first of the series. She didn’t sound too upset about it though; she was probably just too happy that she got the other three.

In the midst of all the confusion, a staff member had time to answer a customer’s query for a better copy of Milan Kundera’s “The Unbearable Lightness of Being.” There was no other copy, but I had the feeling that when new copies arrive there won’t be an excited troupe of would-be customers waiting for them.

At some point the crew came to their senses and halted the distribution. “Intayin nyo na lang ho sa harapan at nagkakagulo na,” some supervisor-looking guy sternly said. No kidding. The customers were well-behaved enough; in a short while they left the boxes alone and went back to the display area near the cashier. By this time the lucky ones who already had the books had formed a line to cashier, no doubt feeling all smug and tingly.

“Ganito ba talaga lagi pag may dumarating na Twilight?” I asked one of the three crew members left guarding the boxes. He explained that they ran out of copies the day before, and the new ones were supposed to arrive at 3 PM but got delayed so customers piled up. The day before. And these books aren’t even new releases. Wow.

Eventually the table and shelves were filled up with the hefty black-and-red tomes, making me immediately miss the variety of other books that were formerly there.

When the pile at the table was about three books deep, a crew member told a colleague, “Tama na yon, hindi na nila mauubos yon.” “Oo, tingan ko kung maubos pa nila yon.”

We’ll, I really wouldn’t be too sure.

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11 thoughts on “and the frenzy continues

  1. sahar009 December 18, 2008 at 1:49 am Reply

    Lol – great post! I’m happy to see that I’m not the only person who is absolutely fascinated by Twilight-obsession. I’m also following some of it, with interviews and loooooooooooooooooooong conversations – I’d love to have your feedback!http://saharsblog.wordpress.com/twilight/

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  2. Mika December 18, 2008 at 2:06 am Reply

    Hey, you changed your layout! Me too! Haha.

    OK, I’m amused by the fact that every single time I enter a bookstore, I would always encounter someone asking about the Twilight series or when the next shipment of books comes in. And half the time, it’s a high school boy or a college (gay) boy asking about it.

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  3. rina December 18, 2008 at 2:16 am Reply

    sahar, mika’s the one you should really talk to about being obsessed, he he….

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  4. sahar009 December 19, 2008 at 3:12 am Reply

    Really? Mika, what’s the deal? Come on, tell me eeeeeeeeeeeeeverything *innocent smile* lol!

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  5. Mika December 19, 2008 at 8:58 am Reply

    Obsessed?

    More like a bad case of cognitive dissonance. It’s a weird sort of addiction even if I’m not a fan of Stephenie Meyer’s style of writing (I find it too dragging), plot build-up (there’s one predictable pattern for her books and that it fails when it tries to be anything bigger than a love story), and Bella’s characterization.

    But, in Twilight-speak, it is a “personal brand of heroin,” that series. Haha, I can’t explain it!

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  6. sahar009 December 19, 2008 at 4:10 pm Reply

    Mika: I know what you mean. I read the entire series in 4 days – one for each book. And I was working those days and I had schoolwork to get done, too, plus I volunteer and I got some sleep. So you do the math😛 And at every chapter, I would slightly hesitate – I wanted to know what was going to happen, but I didn’t know if I could stand anymore of Bella’s gushing over Edward’s perfection and Edward’s running commentary of how he doesn’t want to be the cause of Bella’s death. I did love the fact that, at the end of the series, it’s Bella, the ‘weak’ one, that saves the day – if more emphasis had been put on that, it could have served as a great lesson, one that those who have survived high school know: it’s often the ones who are considered the weakest and who are unfortunately bullied who, if they tough it out, become the ones that change the world😉.

    Hmmm. Another Edward-related post? Perhaps.

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    • rina December 20, 2008 at 1:37 am Reply

      Edward-related posts? Mika has a lot of those? Oh, but of course, she’d be quick to point out that they’re Robert Pattinson posts and not Edward posts, he he

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  7. Mika December 20, 2008 at 9:31 am Reply

    Yeah, they’re Robert Pattinson posts, not Edward Cullen posts. I’ve been playing in my mind a deconstruction of Edward Cullen. I’ll get around to writing it once I’m done with re-reading the books.

    And, for the record, Alice is my favorite Cullen. Hehe.

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  8. […] about a fellow blogger’s experience with a new shipment of Twilight books (you should read it – here) and here are some of the comments that […]

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  9. sahar009 December 22, 2008 at 3:52 am Reply

    Ha ha ha ha oh poor Mika, we are ganging up on you! Sorry🙂 I do hope you enjoy your Robert Pattinson phase🙂

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  10. witsandnuts January 15, 2009 at 7:12 am Reply

    When I was there for the Christmas vacation, I noticed that Twilight Saga is out of stock. More on a per order basis. I used to be so Cullenized, err, addicted to Twilight. I still am. Thankfully, in a more manageable level now. I was smiling while reading your narrative. =)

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