Prefatory Remarks, Self-Serving Explanations, and Unsolicited Compliments

People who work in bookstores tend toward a pessimistic worldview, or so I have observed. This is very understandable, given both the quantity and (mostly) quality of the merchandise they are obliged to sell. And then there is the problem of classification: just where in the store is a particular book to be located? I can foresee that this book will raise this question in a particularly irritating fashion, thus contributing to the malaise already afflicting what I consider to be one of the more honorable occupations in our generally depressing age. Is this book to be placed in the humor section? In religion? In sociology? The predominance of Jewish jokes might suggest ...

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