This Woman Really Understands Book Lovers

, , , , | Friendly | February 25, 2021

I’m at the library, carrying a lot of books.

Random Woman: “Wow! That’s a lot of books! You must want to escape life a lot!”

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A Potential Bio Hazard

, , , , | Right | February 15, 2021

I work at a library reference desk. We often get calls from people who are unable or don’t like to look up addresses and phone numbers on the Internet. I get a call from an older lady.

Me: “[City] public library, this is [My Name]. How can I help you?”

Customer: “Yes, can you look up the address for [Church in Neighboring City]?”

Me: “Sure thing. It’s [address].”

Customer: “Thank you. And can you tell me the pastor’s name?”

Me: “Um… sure. According to the church’s website, his name is [Pastor].”

Customer: “Can you tell me a little more about him? Like, how old he is and where he went to school?”

I’m more than a little weirded out.

Me: “Well, it looks like the website has a little bio on him.”

Customer: “Yes, a bio! Perfect! Can you tell me if he’s married or has children?”

I quickly summarize the pastor’s bio, trying to figure out what she wants with this information, and including the information listed about his wife and kids.

Customer: “So he’s married and has children?”

Me: “Yes.”

Customer: “Can you tell me the age range of his children?”

Me: “No, the bio doesn’t have that information.”

Customer: “Oh. Are you sure?”

Me: “Yes. It just says [repeats information].”

Customer: “Okay. Thank you! Have a blessed day.”

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Keep Acting Like A Child And Maybe You’ll Be Treated Like One

, , , | Right | February 10, 2021

The library I work at recently had to put up signs reminding patrons that discrimination against any kind of minority will not be tolerated and will result in being banned from the building.

A middle-aged, Caucasian, male patron feels the need to approach us about these signs.

Patron: “Excuse me, but those signs about discrimination you posted — if you put something like that up, you need to actually heed what it says.”

Coworker: “What do you mean by that?”

Patron: “I’m being discriminated against here almost every day. Each time I want to use one of your computers I’m rudely told I need to go next door!”

Coworker: “Sir, our computers are reserved for children.”

Patron: “See? That’s exactly what I mean. You are a public library. How can you say you’re not discriminating if you’re picking and choosing who gets to use your computers?”

Coworker: “The ‘no discrimination’ policy is about protecting minorities from being the objects of hate speech in this building. It has nothing to do with using our computers.”

Patron: “But you are being hypocritical if you’re not letting everyone use the library computers.”

Coworker: “You are absolutely welcome to use the computers in the rest of the building. There are ten on this floor and ten more upstairs.”

Patron: “But they’re always occupied! These are vacant!”

Coworker: “They are right now, and they’re reserved for children.”

Patron:How is that fair?

Coworker: “Sir, this is the kids’ library.”

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Book This One Under Lost Cause, Part 2

, , , | Right | February 9, 2021

I work in a university library.

Patron: “Hi, I’d like to buy this book.”

Me: “Sorry, sir, but we don’t sell books. You can borrow it, though.”

Patron: “No, I don’t want to borrow it. I want to buy it!”

Me: “Well, then, you could go to [Local Bookshop]. It’s not even three minutes away.”

Patron: “But I wanted to buy it here… Do you really never sell any books? Ever?”

Me: “Well, we do sell books sometimes, but only old books we don’t need any more, and it’s not often. The one you want is fairly new, so no, we probably won’t sell it.”

Patron: “Aww, that’s too bad.”

He hands me the book and I put it away. I think he’s leaving but he comes back suddenly.

Patron: “Actually, do you have any comics?”

Me: “Yes, we have some historical comics in the history section and some educational comics in—”

Patron: “No, no, I mean fun comics.”

Me: “No. You might want to try [Local Comic Shop] or [Local Public Library] for that. They’re not far from here, either.”

Patron: “But why don’t you have some? You’re also a library.”

Me: “Because we’re a university library, sir, not a public library. All books here are supposed to help students with their classes.”

Patron: “But students need to relax sometimes!”

Me: “Yes, obviously, but we’re located in the town center. Students can relax pretty much everywhere here; there are bookshops, the comic shop, the shopping center, the cinema, coffee shops, and many more.”

Patron: *Muttering* “Mmmh… it’s really too bad that you don’t have comics… Too bad…”

He finally left. I have no idea why he didn’t just go to any of the shops or the public library.

Book This One Under Lost Cause

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At Least You Didn’t Find The Vashta Nerada

, , , | Working | February 2, 2021

I work in a library. I’m going through our craft supplies to find items I need to make a fall craft. However, when I pull one box off of the shelf, I notice MAGGOTS inside the box. I throw it in the trash and notice they’ve spread to the shelf, too. I’m working with [Coworker #1], who is known to be very squeamish and hates bugs, and [Coworker #2], who has a very strong stomach.

I approach [Coworker #2] and whisper to her.

Me: “I found maggots in the craft supplies. Can you help me clean it up and find out where they came from?”

Coworker #1: “What’re you whispering about?”

Me: “You don’t want to know.”

[Coworker #2] and I return to our supply room. We determine that the maggots were inside a bag of acorns and make sure to seal that off. We then take everything out, clean it down, and disinfect everything.

When we return:

Coworker #1: *To [Coworker #2]* “What’s going on?”

Coworker #2: “Really, you do not want to know.”

We’re both very polite but adamant about it. However, [Coworker #1] won’t drop the issue. She keeps asking what we found. Finally, [Coworker #2] gives in and whispers to her:

Coworker #2: “Maggots.”

[Coworker #1] starts screeching.

Coworker #1: “Maggots! Gross! I hate maggots! That’s disgusting! I wish you hadn’t told me!” 

She was loud, but she didn’t go on any longer than that.

Two days later, we all got called into my boss’s office. Apparently, one patron had overheard the outburst and complained. And that’s how three librarians got in trouble for making too much noise in the library.

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