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    A Very Close Knit Community

    | USA | Awesome Customers, Bizarre, Holidays

    (Occasionally customers bring in presents for the staff to show their appreciation. Normally it is cookies or flowers from their yards. Some of the newer staff are still getting used to this generosity. One afternoon in mid-November a woman brings in something different.)

    Customer: “Pick one.” *lifts a a large, clear garbage bag full of brightly colored knit scarves onto the counter*

    Me: “Oh, wow. What is the occasion?”

    Customer: “It’s the holidays! I made all of these and I want to share them!”

    Me: “Are you sure? That’s very thoughtful! You’re a much more prolific knitter than I am.” *carefully removes a scarf from the bag*

    Customer: *quickly moves to my coworker at an adjacent desk* “Here! Pick one! Merry Christmas!”

    Coworker: *looks up startled*

    (I shrug, smile, and go into the work room to tell the other staff what is going on.)

    Coworker: “Thank you. That’s very sweet.” *gingerly picks a scarf*

    (The customer manages to find every staff member in the building and give them a scarf. She leaves immediately afterward.)

    Coworker: “So, uh, do you guys all know her? Does she do this every year?”

    Me: “I have… never seen that woman before in my life.”

    Best To Try To Rise Above It

    , | Portland, ME, USA | Crazy Requests, Health & Body, Theme Of The Month

    (I am in the middle of a health scare involving my lungs, and my doctor has told me not to use the stairs for more than one flight. I need to be on the fourth floor, so I am waiting for the elevator when a patron storms up to me.)

    Patron: “Excuse me! I don’t know if you read the sign, but it clearly says that this elevator is for handicapped people. Not people who are just too lazy to use the stairs.”

    Me: “…I beg your pardon?”

    Patron: “You need to leave the elevator for the people who really need it.”

    Me: “Ma’am, I need the elevator.”

    Patron: “That’s bulls***.”

    Me: “Look, lady. One of my LUNGS is not functioning right now, and my doctor has told me that I’m not allowed to take the stairs.”

    Patron: “Your doctor is too easy on you!”

    Ejected From The Library

    | New York, NY, USA | Criminal/Illegal, Rude & Risque

    (I’m an assistant librarian. We have a section of computers for our patrons to use, located directly next to the children’s section. One day while I’m re-shelving kid’s books, I hear what sounds like people having sex. I turn to look and see an old man sitting at one of the computers watching VERY explicit porn.)

    Me: “Sir! Excuse me, sir. I’m going to have to ask you to turn that off.”

    Old Man: “No! This is a free country!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, but not only is that inappropriate content, we’re right next to the children’s section. You don’t want any of them to see that sort of thing. Do you?”

    Old Man: “It’s perfectly natural! They should see it! I knew all about this sort of thing when I was their age!”

    Me: “…sorry, what!?”

    Old Man: “My mother was a w****! I lost my virginity when I was ten! There’s nothing wrong with kids knowing about sex!”

    Me: “There are so many things wrong with that statement that I can’t even list them.”

    (I ended up having to call the police to remove him because he was making a scene. He was banned from the library, but he still tries to sneak in every few months to watch porn on our computers.)

    This Patron Has A Drinking Problem

    | Houston, TX, USA | Health & Body, Rude & Risque, Top

    (I work at the circulation desk at a small academic library.)

    Patron: *very red-faced* “Um, can you do something?”

    Me: “…about?”

    Patron: “There’s a woman in the computer lab and she… um…”

    (My coworker and I finally manage to get it out of the stammering, embarrassed man that a woman apparently has breastfed her infant and forgot to ‘tuck herself back in’ after the infant was finished eating.)

    Coworker: “Oh, boy. You want this one?”

    Me: “Got it.”

    (I walk up to the woman and lean down quietly to her ear.)

    Me: “Ma’am, I’m very sorry, but we don’t allow open-drink containers in the library.”

    Christmas Is Their Cross To Bear

    | IL, USA | Crazy Requests, Holidays, Religion, Theme Of The Month

    (It is a few days before Christmas. I am finishing up with a patron. At this point, she has been nice and cheerful.)

    Me: “Okay. We will give you a call when the book comes in. Thank you and have a good night!”

    Patron: “Aren’t you forgetting something?”

    Me: “Um, no. I handed you back your card, didn’t I?”

    Patron: “No. You didn’t address me correctly. Try again.”

    Me: “…Have a good night, miss?”

    Patron: “It is the time of Christ and you did not bless me with a Merry Christmas. What kind of Christian establishment hires such heathens that do not bless their customers with the correct Christian way?”

    Me: “Well, honestly, ma’am, this isn’t a Christian establishment. It’s a public library. I apologize for not wishing you a Merry Christmas.”

    Patron: “Every single place on this Earth is a Christian establishment and until you realize this you are headed straight to Hell. Next time I come in, I expect you to bless me and have a proper Christian attitude. I will take this up with your boss if your behavior continues to trend this way.”

    (She stares me down for a few minutes and then leaves. I later find out she did complain to my director and insisted she follow the laws of God by only employing good Christian people!)

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