Memepunks Goes Bookcrossing!
We thought long and hard about where to set free our first round of books. We eventually decided on scenic downtown Ann Arbor, Mi. There are a few reasons for this. The first is Ann Arbor has a fairly hip and intellectual demographic. We felt a strong chance that our books would land in the hands of an appreciative audience that would not only enjoy them, but would perhaps join the bookcrossing revolution. Second, there are many "3rd places" where people gather and interact that would make excellent seeding grounds. And finally, the city of Ann Arbor, and more directly the University of Michigan is playing host to one of the most ambitious and altruistic projects ever conceived in the digital era. Google print has set up shop at the University of Michigan (and other great libraries around the world) with one goal. The preservation by means of digitization all written texts. That's right, Google wants to scan, catalog, and integrate into their search engine every book ever published. How freakin cool is that?
First, we stopped in at the Ann Arbor Bus Depot (map). This close to the supposed "MotorCity" the Bus depot was a classically depressing experience. From the faded and shabby exterior, to the hollow and sparse interior, the place sorta creeped me out. But we felt it would be a great place to leave a good story for a weary traveler. We decided on Childhood's End by Arthur C. Clarke (more details). We casually placed the book on a chair, snapped a comemorative digital shot, and made for the exit. Our first release! It felt adventurous with an odd hint of danger for no good reason and we were hooked!
Second up was the Espresso Royale Caffe (map). A small out of the way independent coffee house right on Main street. The lounge was quiet for a Saturday morning, but there were several students and suited businessmen sipping and chatting. Here we left Vernor Vinge's A Fire Upon the Deep (more details). We didn't linger long here either, as we were still adjusting to this life of underworld book seeding. I think that slowly this was replaced with a child-like sense of immediacy that we HAD TO DO MORE!
We ventured further south on Main street and wandered into one of the dozen or so Starbucks (map) coffee houses littered throughout Ann Arbor. Here we sat and enjoyed a nice cup of coffee and discussed the rest of our adventure as we thought it should go. Perhaps it was the piercing blue eyes of our indie hot barrista, but we were inspired to leave a copy of Dune by Frank Herbert(more details). This time however, we embraced our actions. We stood triumphantly by our newest release, watching it like a parent does a child as they take those first tentative pedals away on their Christmas bicycle.
Next up was the amazing Vault of Midnight(map). This awesome pop culture marketplace takes us back to our childhoods every time we step across the threshold. Billed as a comic shop, this place offers so much more. From strange foreign imports to classic action figures and everything in between, this place is a "must see" for any geek, movie fan, or self proclaimed nerd. Looking for that latest issue of Spiderman? These guys have it. How about a complete set of Pulp Fiction playschoolesqe figures? What about a hard cover edition of
So our first bookcrossing adventure came to a close, but it will not be forgotten. In a great city with a great personality we did our part to share some good reading with the world. From a surprise concert in the park and an indie film shoot (If anyone has any info on a small indie film named "Take 2" being filmed in and around Ann Arbor, PLEASE email us), to a long lost friend of Memepunks appearing out of the blue, it was a good day. Please check out bookcrossing and Ann Arbor if your ever in the area. Memepunks will be happy to show you around and let you buy us a beer or two!