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08 November 2014 @ 09:10 pm
Sometimes, you meet really cool people because of books.  

As I'm tidying up a book display at the store, I hear a customer squeal excitedly and immediately switch into eavesdropping mode.

Customer: "My arms! MY ARMS ARE ON THE COVER!!"

curiousI turn my head so fast that I nearly get whiplash.  The customer is holding up a copy of Mars Rover Curiosity: An Insider Account from Curiosity's Chief Engineer while her friend takes a picture with her cell phone.  Naturally, I have to find out what this is about.

"Excuse me," I say, "But did you say your arms are on that book?"

She laughs, and explains that she's the robotics engineer who designed the arms that were used for the Curiosity Rover.

"Wait wait wait, you're telling me that things you designed are on Mars?"  She nods.  "THAT IS THE COOLEST THING EVER!!!"  We chat for a few minutes, and I learn that developing the arms cost somewhere in the ballpark of $80 million bucks, and this woman is not only super smart but she has a great sense of humor, too.

This is one of the coolest things about working in a bookstore.  You never know who will come wandering in that door!