Meet the Mascot at Walls of Books – Atchison . . .
a/k/a Betty the Bookstore Bunny
Betty the Bookstore Bunny has become a store fixture at Walls of Books – Atchison, the store my wife manages, since the Great “Books with Bunnies” Adoption event.² At night, Betty sleeps in her cage in the back, and she stays behind the counter most of the time the store is open. She eats pellet food, hay, and the occasional celery top or strawberry leaf. She is “trained” and has only had one minor accident-statement—as though to say “this area is now mine.” She enjoys ripping newspaper shreds and nibbling on cardboard, an activity that’s good for her teeth.
Development and Training
Betty has grown comfortable in her area. She lazes, she sits and munches, or she watches and checks things out. She perks up when cars pass by and when customers come in the door but is not skittish. She shows curiosity about Mama Manager’s activities and often approaches to sniff and to learn about the cash register. Betty may turn out to be a natural retailer, but she is a hare short to be of much direct assistance. BOSHA² has recommended the installation of an ergonomically sound rabbit pedestal. Betty doesn’t appear to be the litigious type and is unlikely to sue, being rather content with standing on her hind legs, jumping a little in the morning, and flopping down at breaktime.
Product Knowledge and Local Sales Implications
Betty’s IQ has not been tested, but she manifests a love of learning. She shows a particular taste for what is termed “inspectional reading” in Mortimer Adler’s classic guide (but has not actually tasted any books).
A shop three doors down often has a black lab mix sitting near the door, but he seems to ward off undesirables and divert attention more than actually contributing to sales. A couple of notable establishments in town have the requisite store cat, but no feline-revenue correlation has been published. On the other hand, a couple of special customers have gotten to spend time with Betty the Bookstore Bunny, forming a bond. It is thought that Betty will eventually be able to greet customers—and perhaps to help direct them to certain authors/items, e.g., the Beatrix Potter and Alice in Wonderland books, the pet section, and fidget toys (but not the hunting section).
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Previous posts on books:
Walls of Books in Atchison, Kansas: http://wallsofbooks.net/atchison
¹ “Bibliophilia,” from Gk. biblio and philos, means “love of books.”
² The adoption program on 4/15/17 was jointly sanctioned by Walls of Books franchise headquarters and BPS. [BPS, of course, is Bunny Protective Services. I assume readers can deduce what BOSHA in the Development and Training section is.] No large snakes were benefited by the bunny placements.