Doubly Welcome

, , , | Right | August 7, 2020

I’m working as a trainee in a library. I’m sitting behind the desk, processing a pile of reserved books, when an older customer with a child around age five or six, her grandchild, comes to borrow books. After the borrowing is done, I hand her books and her library card.

Customer: “Thank you.”

Me: “You’re welcome.”

Customer: *To her grandchild* “What do you say?”

Grandchild: *Not really paying attention* “You’re welcome!”

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Unfiltered Story #201687

, | Unfiltered | July 31, 2020

I’m busy tidying when I hear increasingly loud voices from the desk. My colleague doesn’t like computers; whenever someone has a question about them, she passes it on to me.

Colleague: I’m not sure where she is-
Patron: Well get them here NOW!
Colleague: AlRIGHT, I’m trying to find her!
Patron: Isn’t there ANYONE here who knows how to use a bloody computer??

I wander over and ask the lady what she needs. She’s having trouble logging into her email, so I go to her computer and ask her to show me what’s happening. She’s currently on the “reset password” screen.

Me: Okay, so you should be able to just type the new password and then-
She types the password and immediately hits enter, skipping the “confirm your new password” step. The site says “Please confirm your password”
Patron: You SEE?
Me: That’s alright, you just need to-
Patron: *does it again*
Me: Okay, wait, you need to-
Patron: *does it again* It’s just shit! I don’t understand what’s wrong!
Me: The problem is that you didn’t confirm the password; it wants it twice, to make sure you haven’t made any mistakes. So just type the password but don’t hit enter… Okay, now click in the box that says “Confirm”
Patron: Like this? *clicks submit*
Me: No… okay… just type the password and don’t hit enter… okay, now click HERE *jabs the screen* and type your password again…
She finally gets it right! Then comes up with this gem:
Patron: So that’s done, is it? And that’s my password now? I don’t understand why I couldn’t just use my old one!
Me either, lady, but maybe if I hadn’t wanted to get rid of your crappy attitude as fast as possible, I’d have checked whether or not you had any idea what you were doing to begin with.

Unfiltered Story #201665

, , | Unfiltered | July 30, 2020

I work in a computer lab of a small library in NLR, AR. Every once in a while we get a unstable patron that comes in. A patron came in earlier and was causing a slight commotion over scrap paper, when he suddenly left. He came back moments later and I had this conversation with him:

Patron: So you got curly hair, and a blue dress on? okay I got cha’.
Me: Ummmm……
Patron: Federal law says you gotta give me paper!
Me: Sir, I’m sure that there is no such Federal Law, but I can give some scrap paper just not a full sheet.
Patron: You know now that Trump is president things will get better.
Me: Okay.
Patron: Trump is gonna take all the jobs away from woman and put them back in their place!
Me: Sir?
Patron: Y’all *points to me and a co-worker* better get your a** back in the kitchen.
Me: Sir, I find what your saying highly offensive I’m gonna ask that you leave the library now.
Patron: I’m just letting you know that you wont have a job for long. Get your a** in the kitchen B*%$#.

Eventually I have to call the cops because he won’t leave, and for offensive language.

Gaston Goes To The Library

, , , , | Right | July 23, 2020

I’m eleven years old. I am reading a book that I was given by the librarians. The book has been cancelled out of the system. I’m sitting at a table at the back of the library. At some point, a grown man comes up and sees the book cover.

Patron: “Hey! That’s the book I need!”

He smiles and rips it out of my hand.

Me: “Sir, that’s my book and I was just reading it.”

I follow the man as he grabs other books, telling him it’s my book.

Patron: “Look, I’m sick of you; you’re a stupid, selfish girl, so go away.”

The man goes to check out my book, but the computer won’t allow him to check it out.

Patron: “D***! Why won’t this book check out?!”

Me: “Because it was cancelled from the system. Also, that book is mine; it no longer belongs to the library.”

The librarian looks at me.

Librarian: “She’s telling the truth; I remember giving her that.”

Patron: “What?! But she’s a girl and girls are stupid!

Me: “Sir, I’m grade six. I just turned eleven a few months ago, so I actually skipped a grade. Also, I can read that.”

Patron: “Well, I thought she was a selfish little girl!”

The man gave me the book back and I went back to reading.

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I Don’t Support The Arts Before Noon

, , , , , , | Working | July 20, 2020

I work in a library. Some years ago, my department was told we needed to come up with creative arts programs for adults. Adult patrons had complained that there were art programs for kids, but none for adults, so we’d better pick up the pace and start thinking about our adult patrons! 

We all knew how this would play out but went ahead with it anyway. We contracted with an artist whose programs were relatively inexpensive and who was known for being fun to work with. Then, we purchased the materials we would need and advertised all over the building, on our website, and around town by newspaper and radio.

We had indicated that, as materials were limited, it was necessary to sign up in advance. The program was set for a Saturday morning, which all fifteen of the signees indicated was a good time for them.

The day rolled around and I helped the artist set up for fifteen patrons.

And we waited.

Eventually, five people showed up. None of them were the people who signed up for the program, but oh, well, a good time was had by almost all.

When the program was over and I returned to my department, the phone calls began:

1) “Hi, is the program still on? I know it’s for an hour and I know I said I liked the idea of it early, but I didn’t feel like getting out of bed.”

Too bad. So sad.

2) “Hi, I just couldn’t get in this morning. It was too hard. Can you get the artist to come back tomorrow? I could be there then.”

Yes, because it’s easy to convince an artist to return at short notice on a day we are closed to the public.

And then, there was this one.

3) A patron who is known for being dense charged into our department at 3:30 pm, four and a half hours after the program ended. “I was just upstairs in the art area and there’s no program! I signed up for this program! Why isn’t it on?”

I explained, “You agreed that you wanted the program early in the day. It was on at 10:00 am. It’s over now.” 

“But I really wanted to attend,” she insisted, waving a program flyer in my face. “I thought it went all day.”

I took the flyer from her and pointed to the spot that said, “10:00 am to 11:00 am.”

“Well, I slept through my alarm clock because you didn’t call me,” the patron said. “You are supposed to call me. You know how I am.”

“[Patron], how old are you?” I asked. She told me she was thirty-three. So I asked her, “Don’t you think thirty-three is old enough to set alarm clocks and make decisions for yourself?”

“But I am a taxpayer,” the patron said, “and I should get wake up calls if I need them, and I didn’t get one, and now I can’t have my art program.”

She finally left, grumbling all the while.  

We still try to have various programs to get in the adults and teens, and we always get a whole bunch of people who sign up in droves and promise to be there… and never are. We wasted more money on stuff like this and the admin couldn’t figure it out. We want to get patrons to come in, as well, but with folks like this, it’s kind of tough to commit cash to something no one is going to show up for.

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