A bit of library humor

I was talking with my friend Marie-Claude shortly after finishing the first draft of this book. She said, “Speaking of encyclopedias, I have to tell you this unreal but true story. You know my friend ——, right? Well, she used to work at Encyclopedia Britannica. She was working on a new edition. And I’ve actually seen this at the library, so I promise you I’m not making this up: On the spine of volume 8, it says Menage-Ottawa. That was her doing. The editors apparently never picked up on it.” I ran to the library to see for myself. -Amy Krouse Rosenthal, Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life

There’s a little photocopy of the spine in the book, but obviously I had to check it out for myself. And it’s true! Our EB has Menage-Ottawa, too! I showed my boss, who couldn’t stop laughing, and he showed the director. Now I am going to get the reputation of a troublemaker. hehehe.

It’s too bad A.J. Jacobs didn’t know about that. I am sure he would have enjoyed that fun fact.

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  1. HA! That’s awesome.

    Posted 2/24/2005 at | Permalink
  2. Rose

    I don’t get it…..

    Posted 2/24/2005 at | Permalink
  3. Me either. (what’s new)

    Posted 2/24/2005 at | Permalink
  4. ok, it is very subtle humor that the editor did not catch right away.
    Also, if you have not watched a lot of Seinfeld or not familiar with French, you may not get it. Menage–Ottawa when said fast enough sounds like the french expression “ménages à trois” which when translated into english you get “external triangle” and if you know the stereotype of french people and their culture you may begin to put the pieces together. If you need any further information, go to IMDB and look at Stephen Baldwin’s 1994 movie where he played the character Stuart. Also, I just found out there is an “actress” named Menage Trois with an impressive film career.

    Posted 2/24/2005 at | Permalink
  5. Kari

    Mike, that might be TMI. lol.

    Posted 2/24/2005 at | Permalink
  6. AJ would of LOVED THAT. You should email him, telling him how much you enjoyed the book then lay that one on him.

    Posted 2/24/2005 at | Permalink
  7. That is so awesome. I love it! 🙂

    Look how fun librarians are!

    Posted 2/24/2005 at | Permalink
  8. Rose

    aha…now i get it..thanks for the explanation mike.

    Posted 2/24/2005 at | Permalink
  9. Roger


    Posted 2/25/2005 at | Permalink
  10. Love it!

    Posted 7/10/2005 at | Permalink
  11. I actually work at EB. What’s the name of the friend who supposedly is responsible for this? I think the spine of Volume 8 has been the same for quite some time; and just FYI, most people in the office are aware of the bit.

    Posted 1/6/2007 at | Permalink
  12. Kari

    Well, you’d have to ask Amy Krouse Rosenthal. That’s a quote from her book, not my own words.

    Posted 1/6/2007 at | Permalink

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