A Knee-Jerk Reaction

, , , , | Right | July 5, 2018

(To reduce strain on my back, I often kneel down while reshelving books on the lowest shelves in the library. Whilst I am doing so, a woman — who must be in her 60s or 70s — has been browsing the fiction section, and she walks past me.)

Elderly Woman: “The best place to be is on your knees.”

(I don’t know if it was a poor choice of words, or if she’d actually intended it for it to sound like it sounded, but either way I was left at a loss for words at her remark; my colleagues, on the other hand, had a good laugh.)

Me Too, Too Many Times

, , , , , , | Friendly | July 1, 2018

(I am in the library to scan some documents for evidence that I have been harassed. A man enters before me to use the copier. We exchange greetings. He then goes into a long monologue about printing information about a painting he has that is supposedly worth millions of dollars. Of course, the insurance doesn’t want to insure it for that, but they’re missing out. He then starts into some random conspiracy theory. At this point, I am using the other copier trying to ignore him and focus on my scanning. No eye contact, no grunts or uh-huhs. At this point, the only word I’ve said to him is, “hi.” He doesn’t get the hint. Eventually, I have to tell him that I just want to get my scanning done in peace. When I get home, I have this conversation with my other half, who is male.)

Me: “I swear that I must have some mark on my forehead that just attracts all the nutters. I’m in the library to get stuff for nut job one, when I’m then involved in a conversation with a second nut job.” *explains what happened*

Other Half: “He was just trying to have a conversation. This is how you make friends.”

Me: “No. As a woman, this is how you get assaulted. This is not how you make friends.”

Libraries Fighting Ignorance: Needed Now More Than Ever

, , , | Right | June 30, 2018

(I work at a public library. I’ve experienced many dumb people and a ton of stupid questions. I worry about the future of our world sometimes. While libraries aren’t as popular as they used to be, most people know how a library works. Not this time. A patron walks up to me at the circulation desk with a few books. I assume she wants to check them out, so I kindly ask for her library card.)

Patron: “What’s that? Why do I need that?!”

Me: “In order to check out books you’ll have to have a card. The books you check out will be put on your account; that way we know who has them and when they are due back.”

Patron: “That is stupid. So, I have to have a library card to check out some books?”

Me: “Yes, you have to have a library card in order to check out library books.”

(Not a hard concept. I guess common sense is lacking in today’s society.)

Their Confusion Is An Open Book

, , , , | Right | June 29, 2018

(I work at a public library and this is what I have to put up with. It happens a lot more often than you’d think. I don’t expect young children to understand how a library works, but you’d think a pre-teen would have some knowledge of library procedures.)

13-Year-Old Patron: “Are the books free?”

Me: “Well, you have to check them out with your library card. If they’re late or you lose them, then you’ll have a fine. But otherwise, they are free to borrow.”

13-Year-Old Patron: *looks extremely confused* “So… I can have it?”

Me: “The book belongs to the library, but you may check it out and return it on the due date.”

(He put the books back and walked out without saying anything. These are our future leaders, people.)

The (Water)Main Reason To Close

, , , , | Working | June 29, 2018

(The city is working on its water mains, which results in the water being completely shut off in the library I work in. There is no estimated time when this will be complete; it could be hours, or it could be days. That means the library has no running water whatsoever for an indefinite amount of time, which includes the water fountains and restrooms.)

Director: “We can still open; people don’t stay here that long, anyway.”

Manager: *shocked* “But what about our staff? Some of them are scheduled for eight-hour shifts!”

Director: “What about them? Most of them bring water bottles or coffee. Heck, I’ll go out and buy a crate of water bottles for everyone.”

Manager: “What about the bathrooms?

Director: “What about the bathrooms?”

Employee #1: “If we’re going to work for eight hours, we’re going to need to use the bathrooms sooner or later.”

Director: “You can still use them; you just can’t flush.”

(At this point, every staff member within hearing range turns around and looks at her in total disgust.)

Manager: “You want us to keep using the same toilet all day?

Director: *as if it’s the most obvious thing in the whole world* “Yes. I don’t mind. I’ll be using the same toilets that haven’t been flushed. It doesn’t bother me.”

Employee #2: “But what about the smell? Do you want the whole library to smell like a cesspool?”

Director: *mumbles* “I don’t see the problem.”

Employee #1: “Think about the maintenance staff who has to clean after all that, too.”

Director: “I still don’t see what the big deal is. Most of the patrons don’t even go near the bathrooms.”

(At that point, the union representative walks in.)

Employee #1: “Hey, [Union Rep], did you hear? The city shut down water to the whole building.”

Union Representative: “If it’s shut off for more than two hours, we have to close: OSHA’s rules.”

(No one clapped because the director was there. She shot the Union Rep one heck of a death glare. She was PISSED OFF the entire rest of the day and sulked around her staff. It didn’t help when the water remained shut off for more than two hours, and she had to send everyone home with pay.)

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