I got an email from a site that sells used books. The email asked what was the strangest item I ever found in a book? Unfortunately, I couldn’t leave a comment on their website because I wasn’t willing to sign in with my Facebook or Twitter account. I’ve never signed into an outside website with my Facebook or Twitter credentials because it seems really, really stupid.
So, the strangest thing that I ever found in a book. I was probably sixteen. I had a paper to write, and I was at the public library looking for books about the Civil Rights era. I was standing before a second story window with a window seat, flipping through a book, and I found a “business card” from the Ku Klux Klan.
It was a plain white business card with black lettering and the black outline of a hooded “Klansman,” and the text read: “You have just been paid a visit by the Ku Klux Klan. Should we pay you a real visit?”
That was 27 years ago. I still feel the very same mixture of emotions. The KKK has business cards? Who would put a KKK business card in a library book? Who would print business cards for the KKK? Because back then, we didn’t have the Internet at home, or printers, and we didn’t walk into an office supply store and buy a non-existent package of blank business cards and steal some clip art and print out business cards with raised lettering.
Did some local business print that card? Entirely possible, here. Did the Krand Krakpot of the local Klapkrap order them in bulk from some anonymous address he found in the classified section of a magazine?
I’m glad that I found that card and threw it away. It did not reach its intended target. Today, that would probably be considered a hate crime. It should be. Back then–I knew what to do. Throw it away. Don’t raise a fuss.
That’s the strangest thing I ever found in a book.