Cheese Used As a Bookmark Alarms the Internet

A librarian in Liverpool found a single gooey slice tucked into a book and the punsters came out in droves.

Somehow we missed out on that whole “Don’t have a bookmark?” meme last year. (Maybe our nose was buried in our book?) That was actually probably lucky because the sight of foods and drinks like Chex Mix, Vitamin Water, Steak-umms and chicken wings, among other items, being smushed in the middle of perfectly good novels would probably have made our book-loving selves rather anxious. Those … poor … food-besmirched … books!

However, just when bibliophiles thought it was safe to go back on social media, the Twitter account for the University of Liverpool Library, in England, revived the whole food-as-bookmark nightmare the other day when it tweeted an image of a who-knows-how-old slice of plastic-wrapped American cheese with the caption: “This is not a bookmark.”

In a follow-up post, the library’s social media people offered a little bit more context, writing, “Me talking to the pest control man - "No mate I've no idea why we have mice in the library" *Picks up a book and actual cheese falls out of it*”

Alas, the library’s associate director, Alex Widdeson, later told the BBC that the person who found the "disconcertingly warm and liquid" piece of cheese "somewhere between American history and geography” on Tuesday night was "so stunned" she "forgot to note" what book it fell out of. "It's fair to say they were a mix of amused and disgusted," she said.

In any event, the Twitter posts soon went viral – because eeew! – and the library seized its gooey moment in the sun byencouraging people to send in their cheesiest puns. “We will pick the best pun and post the cheese slice to the winner!” it promised.

Wordsmiths exclaimed that the whole thing was “Grate!” and sighed that it was a “Feta complis.”

“You gouda brie kidding,” one person wrote.

“I’m sorry but there’s no whey someone actually did this...” quipped another.

“Add some tortilla chips and you can say ‘that's nacho book’ to anyone who hasn't borrowed it,” suggested a third.

Someone even mocked up a Time cover featuring the famous slice of cheese. Apparently that was too much for the Liverpool librarians: “Oh come on...!” they wrote.

And in its most recent but probably not final word on the subject, the library has just tweeted out a montage of some of the tabloid attention that has rained down upon its super-gross slice of cheese and offered its gratitude.

“Thank you for all the cheesy puns and the philosophical discussion about what cheese is and what bookmarks are,” it wrote. “It’s been a strange few days but it shows libraries are the best! #welovelibraries #notabookmark#nocheeseplease #shush

Who says librarians have no sense of humor?

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