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A Message From The Messiah

| MD, USA | Religion

(I am calling a patron up to tell them they had accidentally turned in a DVD case without the disk inside. I get their answering machine.)

Machine: “Thank you so much for calling me on this blessed day Jesus has provided for us. Praise Jesus and all his wonders. Praise God and everything he has given us. For he is our savior and we should all bow down to his golden light. Praise Jesus, praise Him, praise the Lord! Thank you for calling me and have a wonderful, BLESSED day!”

(The machine finally beeps to let me leave a message.)

Me: “Um… hello, Miss [Name]. I am calling today because you returned a DVD case without the disk inside. I have renewed the item and you can return it to us anytime before then. Thank you, and… um… Praise Jesus.”

(I hung up and realized a split second later what I had just said.)

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Books With The Same Story Every Night

| UK | Bad Behavior, Books & Reading, Time

(It’s late on a Friday evening, near closing time, and the library’s empty. My coworker and I are discussing customers who dawdle at closing time in the various other branches of the library, taking FOREVER to select books and get them checked out.)

Coworker: “Sometimes I feel like they do it just to prove a point.”

Me: “I know! Thank goodness this branch is so quiet. Geez, imagine if someone walked through the door right as we were closing up?”

(Minutes pass, and seven o’clock gets ever closer; we tidy up and, in the final few minutes, shut off the computers. Then, right on the dot on seven, the phone rings.)

Coworker: “Oh, NO.”

Me: “You have got to be kidding.”

(I answer, hoping it’s from one of the other branches open this late.)

Me: “Hello, [Library].”

Caller: “Hello; I was wondering if you could find a book for me?”

Me: “I’m very sorry, madam, but we’ve just closed. The library opens again at nine tomorrow morning.”

Caller: “Oh, please, could you just check?”

Me: “Well, our computers have shut down for the night, so the only way I’d be able to find it would be by a physical shelf check. But I can make a note of it, so that we can look for it tomorrow and call you back as early as possible. What’s the name of the book?”

Caller: “I think it’s called Who Moved My Cheese? It’s a fiction book.”

Me: “And do you know the name of the author?”

Caller: “No, I’m afraid I don’t. Can’t you look it up?”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I can’t. Like I said, the computers have shut down for the night, and won’t start up again until tomorrow morning. The program we use for managing our books is on those computers, so I can’t look for the book on the system to see if we actually have it, whether it’s on loan or where it might be, or whether any of the other libraries have it.”

Caller: “But couldn’t you look on the shelves?”

Me: “I’m afraid not. We’re officially closed; we’re literally just about to lock up and leave. A physical shelf check would take a fair while, especially since we don’t know the author’s name or what genre the book is. Again, I’ll make a note of your name and request so that we can look for it when we open tomorrow at nine.”

Caller: “Please, can’t you have just a quick check now?”

Me: “I’m sorry, madam, but we can’t. It’s now past seven. We need to go home. If you’ll give me your name, I promise we’ll look for the book as soon as we open tomorrow.”

(She finally gives me her name, very disappointed. I hang up and stare at my coworker.)

Me: “She must know what time we close. She MUST. Who DOES that? A minute or two before closing time, I get that, but right on the hour?”

Coworker: “Let’s get out of here before someone thinks we’re still open.”

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It Just Doesn’t Click

| Los Angeles, CA, USA | Extra Stupid, Technology

(I am a librarian. A patron comes up to the reference desk.)

Patron: “How can I print out pictures that I find on the web?”

Me: “Here, use this mouse and keyboard, and I’ll walk you through an example. Here’s a random picture that I found on the Internet. Press Control+P and watch what happens… Okay, good! You’re looking at the print dialog box. Now, don’t do this part now, but when you’re in the computer lab doing this with a picture you actually want to print, you’ll click the Print button.”

Patron: “And then it will print?”

Me: “Yes. Don’t click Print now, but when you’re in the lab, you’ll click Print and your picture will print out downstairs.”

Patron: *click*

Me: “…aaand here’s your complimentary printout of a random picture.”