An Undocumented Case Of Stupidity

| USA | Learning | January 28, 2017

(I work the front desk at my university’s library. I often help students print from our large touch screen printer.)

Student: “Excuse me, can you help me print?”

Me: “Sure! Which computer are you printing from?”

Student: “One.”

(I walk him over to the printer and show him how to access the printing queue from computer one. There are roughly fifteen documents that pop up.)

Me: “Okay, which documents are yours?”

Student: “All of them!”

Me: “Okay.”

(I’ve never had a student print so many documents at once, but I figure it’s an end of semester project or something. I put in his print card, select all of the documents, and hit print.)

Student: *grabbing the pages being printed* “These aren’t mine!”

Me: “…”

This Situation Will Just Snake Along

| IN, USA | Right | January 25, 2017

(I work in the children’s department on the second floor of our large public library, so I see some interesting things. There are no food and drinks allowed except in the main lobby area. A roughly ten-year-old boy enters the children’s department.)

Boy: “Can I get logged onto a computer? Oh, and this isn’t a drink by the way.” *he’s holding a styrofoam drink cup*

Me: “Yes, there are computers open in the lab. What’s in the cup?”

Boy: “A snake!”

Me: “What? A live snake?”

Boy: “Yep! I found it outside and I’m taking it home but I wanted to come here first. Can he stay in the cup while I’m on the computer?”

(A bit stupefied by the unexpected situation, I agree. I comes to my senses and realize a minute later that this a terrible idea.)

Me: *goes to computer lab* “I’m sorry, we actually don’t allow animals except trained service animals in the library. You need to take the snake outside.”

(The boy reluctantly agrees to do so. Out of curiosity, I watch him from the windows. The library security guard joins me to see what’s going on. The boy has elected to dump the snake out directly in front of the library main doors, which are automatic and still open behind him. It’s November and chilly so of course the snake is going towards heat, resulting in a desperate game of soccer on the boy’s part. There is general relief from the watching crowd when the snake is finally coerced into the bushes. My coworker stops panicking and everyone resumes normal duties. Five minutes later, an adult man walks into the children’s department:)

Man: “Hey, do you have a hole punch?”

Me: “We should, but you have to use it here at the desk. May I ask what you need it for?”

Man: *holding up Pringles can* “I found this snake outside and I put him in this can, but I want to punch some holes in the lid so he can breathe while I’m here. Can I borrow it?”

Coworker: “Why is that snake back in here again?!”

(Please note that he had to walk through the main lobby, past the circulation desk, past the reference desk, upstairs, and around the corner to children’s. The man was denied use of the hole punch, under duress, and the snake was escorted back outside of the library. Such fuss over an average garter snake!)

Et Tu Genealogy?

| Provo, UT, USA | Learning | January 25, 2017

(I work at a university library, in a section that deals specifically with religion books and with family history research. I’m also getting a history degree, so I get a lot of history-related questions. We have a large-format printer with which people print off pedigree charts, fan charts, and any other posters. The fan charts, which show about nine generations, especially are a popular service. One day I get this call.)

Me: “[Library]. How may I help you?

Caller: “Hi. Can you print fan charts that go as far back as Julius Caesar?”

Me: *thinking it’s a joke* “Sorry?”

Caller: “Yeah, I traced my genealogy back to Julius Caesar, and I want to show that on a fan chart.”

Me: “Um, no, I’m afraid the program can only portray nine generations. Is there anything else I can help you with?”

Caller: *obviously disappointed* “No, that’s all right.”

(He hangs up. I relate all this to my coworker.)

Me: “I didn’t have the heart to tell him that Julius Caesar doesn’t have any known surviving descendants.”

Not Saved By The Bell

, | USA | Learning | January 23, 2017

(At my college library at closing time, we signal by pressing a bell at 15 minutes, 10 minutes, and then 5 minutes to close. There are always two people on closing shift: one person stays at the checkout counter to help people check out books and the other person walks around the floors, politely reminding everyone that it’s time to leave. One night, after I have rung the 15 minute and 10 minute warning bells, a girl storms up to the checkout counter.)

Girl: “Someone up there keeps ringing a bell. You need to make them stop. It’s very loud and I’m trying to study!”

Me: “Yes, ma’am, I did. That’s our closing warning bell. We’re closing for the night in 10 minutes. Please pack up your books to leave.”

Girl: “Humph! Well, you shouldn’t make it so loud. I have a test to study for!”

(Guess who made me and my shift-mate 10 minutes late to close that night while she packed up her books?)

College Is A Lottery

, | St. Louis, MO, USA | Learning | January 17, 2017

Student #1: *to [Student #2]* “What would you do if you won the Powerball Lottery?”

Student #2: *thinking* “Hmm, probably pay off my college tuition. Then use the remaining seven dollars to buy myself a sandwich.”

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