This one really chaps my ass, I mean like brick red….College bookstores. This may be one of the greatest overall scams in the history of the universe—worse than tanning pills, Pilsner Urquel, and mesh condoms….combined. What a system, seriously. Here was a typical semester for me:

-Crappy used Econ book including random highlighting, scratching and random belligerence: $96.50
-Packet of paper in plastic wrap, not bound: $83.15
-New Calc book because used were "gone": $174.00
-Chemistry book that is about to fall apart but it's the last used one so I take it: $76.53
-"Required" chemistry lab supplement packet stapled together: $57.32

"Your total is (whatever that adds up to plus tax), would you like to put that on your school account that doesn't seem like real money anyway?"

Sure.

"OK well you do get this free bookmark with your purchase!! Have a great day!!"

You too. (Think about how I could have bought 40 cases of Keystone Light for that much money…good thing it wasn't real)

(Semester passes, I use books a combined total of 4 times, and one was to level out of the coffee table for mini-beer pong)

I return back to the bookstore to get some sweet free cash.

"Oooook looks like I can give you fifty cents for this one…"

Fifty cents? What the hell?

"Yeah they're changing next semester to Edition 19, in which page 432 will have a graph."

Page 432 already has a graph.

"It will be in color. Ok twelve dollars for these two together, a piece of string and this pocket lint for this, aaaand I can take this from you but I get to punch you in the sternum."

@#$#…fine. Thanks. Ouch. Thanks. @#$# off.

Repeat through undergrad and post graduate education, then realize it was real money that you now owe interest on And what becomes of those books I got $12.50 and a cracked sternum for? You bought them for $350 the following semester.

I can picture the leaders of thissoulless cartel, a la the where the Tobacco company guys are smoking cigars and shooting puppies. "Houghton, grab me another stogie made out of broke college students' money and toss that Labrodoodle out the window….do it now Houghton."

I for one refuse to grab my ankles ever again, and will be stealing all my books from here on out. Take that, the Man.