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A Crafty Grandmother, Part 2

, , , , | Right | April 13, 2022

I work in a library. We set up an arts and crafts table during school breaks, and people have been inconsiderate.

Wise of past mistakes, we have a sign up asking that people who use the arts and crafts table clean up after themselves when they leave. People do not know how to read signs, so at closing time, we go around to remind them

A small child and their grandmother are sitting at the arts and crafts table at closing time, so I go up to them to warn them that the library will be closing soon.

Me: “Hello, we close in five minutes, so it’s time to start to clean up the table so it’ll be nice and tidy for the children who come by tomorrow. You can put the supplies back in the marked boxes over there.”

Child: “Noooo! I’m not finished yet. Can we stay a little longer?”

Me: “I’m sorry, but we who work here want to go home to our families, too. You can come back and finish tomorrow.”

Grandmother: “No, we won’t have time to come back tomorrow. We have other activities planned for the rest of the holidays and then he has to go back home.”

Me: “Okay, why don’t you grab the things you need to finish your project and take them home with you? You can grab a few stickers and some glitter and coloured paper if you want. Just clean up after yourselves after you leave, please.”

They agreed to do so, and I left to get the rest of the place in order for closing. When I got back to the information desk, I asked my coworker if everyone had left and she confirmed that they had. I did another round just to make sure and arrived at the arts and crafts table.

It had been picked completely clean. All the coloured pencils, the glitter glue, the crepe paper, the scissors, the sticker sheets, and the pipe cleaners meant for our visitors to use were gone.

Congratulations, Granny, for your creative interpretation of “grab the things you need to finish your project”. Thanks to you, the next day, the kids had to make do with mostly just plain copy paper and pencils until we could get more supplies in.

Related:
A Crafty Grandmother

With Great Power Comes Great Literacy

, , , , , , | Related | April 11, 2022

This story was told to me by my mother. I’m an itty-bitty first-grader at the local public library with her. Even though I’ve only recently started reading with any kind of ease and my library card is brand new, I LOVE books. My only previous library experience is with my school library, which has a checkout limit of two books per child.

Me: “How many can I check out?”

Mom: “Why don’t you ask the librarian over there?”

Satisfied with being given a route to an answer, I go chase after the librarian, who has just decided to move to a nearby section. My mom stays put, wanting to give me a little independence and knowing I won’t go far.

When I return, the librarian trails behind me to make sure I get back to my mother. She, however, is focused on me — more specifically, my vaguely diabolical ear-to-ear grin.

Mom: “What did the librarian say?”

Me: *Still beaming* “She said I could check out AS MANY AS I COULD HANDLE.”

Thus began many years of checking out twenty books at a time — enough that carrying them was a test of my strength and my book bag wept for mercy — and finishing them all in a week. My mom still laughs at the thought of that giant grin on my face as I realized the power of a library card.

Reading Is Life

, , , , , , | Friendly | April 4, 2022

I was a REALLY bookish kid. When my mom had the time to take me to the public library, I’d load up on all the books I could physically carry, read them all in a week, and then reread the best ones until they had to be returned.

One day, as I was reaching up to put all my books in the return slot under my mother’s watchful eye, a friendly old lady stopped by us and chatted a little with my mom before I finished and she turned to me.

Old Lady: “You just really like reading, huh?”

Me: “Yeah!”

Old Lady: “What would you do if you couldn’t read?”

I thought about it. I liked drawing but got bored with it pretty quickly. I couldn’t bring toys to school, so I couldn’t play during recess instead of reading a book. There was only so long I was allowed to play video games for. I genuinely could not imagine what kind of fun I could have for very long without books. Thus, I came to a conclusion of what I would do if I couldn’t read.

Me: “Die?”

My mother very quickly got us out of that conversation and pushed me into the main library. I’m sure she was a little shocked and heartily embarrassed, but once I got older and developed a dark sense of humor, I thought it was hilarious.

When You First Discover Copy In The Morning

, , , | Right | March 28, 2022

I work in a library. I’ve just helped a lady make some copies, and I take her over to the cash register to pay for them.

Me: “All right, that will be twelve crowns, please.”

Patron: *Waving the copies in my face* “Look at these!”

Me: “Oh, is there anything wrong with them? You wanted double-sided colour copies, didn’t you?”

Patron: “But they look exactly the same!”

Me: “Well, that’s usually what happens when you make a copy of something.”

She puts the copies and the originals down on the counter next to each other.

Patron: “I can’t tell the difference! How am I supposed to know which ones my originals are?”

Me: “The original set is the one with the folding mark in the middle.”

Patron: “But I can’t tell the difference! This is amazing!”

Me: “Here, I’ll put a paperclip on the originals for you so you can tell them apart. And that will be twelve crowns, please.”

Patron: *Pays happily* “I can’t believe it! But you need to be careful; people will come here and use that thing to make fake passports.”

Yep. I’ll be sure to keep an eye out for all the villains trying to use our ten-year-old photocopier to forge IDs.

An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 23

, , , , , | Right | March 24, 2022

My immunocompromised husband works for the library, which means working for fundraising events. Donors come in the evening, have some hors d’oeuvres, and hear a speaker or look at some rare/old materials pulled from the archives — and yes, that person holding the tray is a librarian!

During most of the health crisis, they’ve suspended in-person events like this, but recently they’ve started up a modified version with no food and a mask requirement.

At the first new event, most of the donors follow the rules, but one man walks in masked and then slips it off. And then, of course, he all but dares the staff to say something by walking up to them and starting up conversations. Finally:

Husband: *Coldly* “No.”

Donor: “What?”

Husband: “I’m not talking to you.”

Donor: “Excuse me? Why?”

Husband: “Because you aren’t wearing a mask!”

Donor: “Did you not hear that the governor is lifting the mask mandate—”

Husband: “Did you hear that the library is lifting its mask mandate? Because I get emails about every policy change like that, and I didn’t see one saying no more masks. If you got a message about it from the library that I missed, I would love to see it.”

Donor: “The other staff didn’t—”

Husband: “I don’t care what the other staff did. I’m not standing here inhaling everything that comes out of your mouth.”

This continues, the donor blustering and my husband staying firm and (let it be said) very unfriendly to this patron of the library.

My husband’s boss, a sweet old woman in her seventies, comes over to see what the hubbub is.

Boss: “What’s going on here? Why are you talking to him like that?”

Husband: “This guy keeps pulling his mask off when he thinks you aren’t looking.”

She turns to the donor.

Boss: “Put on the f****** mask.”

Related:
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 22
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 21
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 20
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 19
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 18