Thursday, December 22, 2005

Miss Information learns all about responsible library card ownership

Miss Information was sitting minding her own business at the Reference Desk when a Circ Desk clerk approached her, accompanied by a patron. It seems the gentleman hadn’t brought his library card because he doesn’t “carry things like that around with him”. He did however have a photocopy of the card and a photocopied piece of ID. The rules of the library require a customer to either have their card present or an actual piece of ID—because frankly it isn’t that difficult to carry around. They’re small and light. Most wallets have a little “library card compartment” to make it easy for you. Besides, Miss Information maintains that no one accidentally comes into the library. Most people set out knowing they’re going to drop in and it isn’t too much to ask that they actually have their card with them, is it?

Anyway, this guy insisted he was a customer well known to Miss Information and she could confirm his name.

Actually, no. Miss Information is notoriously bad with names. She finds herself describing staff members to each other in conversation because their names escape her. So, co-workers are known as “the guy in charge”, “that woman with the new dog” and “that really nice woman at circ”. And these are people she actually likes. The customers are a completely different matter. Miss Information has nicknames for the regulars—Ratboy, Opera Woman, the Farting Genealogist, etc. She even has a database. This guy, while not in the database is nevertheless familiar to Miss Information. This is the man who once lodged a serious formal complaint against her. She didn’t know his name then and she doesn’t know it now.

He complained that she was too lazy to help his wife look for a book. The situation was as follows. Miss Information had looked up a book for his wife (and she doesn’t know her name either). The computer said it wasn’t in the library, so Miss Information requested the book from another branch and that was that. Or so she thought. Wifey went to the shelves herself and found the book. Obviously Miss Information was a great big lazy liar who just hadn’t wanted to drag her great big lazy ass to the shelves. In fact, she was nursing a serious and unpleasant foot injury at the time and while she wasn’t in the mood for unnecessary dancing, she could just about manage to haul herself around the library for a good cause.

Unfortunately she had forgotten--a new computer program had been implemented just that week which was causing a number of “in library” materials to appear to be not “in library”. It had slipped her mind. So, see she wasn’t lazy, just incompetent. She told her supervisor and they had a big laugh over the whole thing.

So, yes. Happily she was able to report that the customer was familiar to her, although she didn’t know his name.

Later Miss Information learned that the man didn’t have his library card with him because he keeps it in his gun case for safety reasons. She spent the rest of the shift relieved that he had only filed a complaint against her.


At 11:43 PM, Blogger Nike said...

I wonder if the library card is protecting the guns or the guns are protecting the library card? Because what other 'safety' reason is there to hide a library card?
Although it might be high on some wing-nut's list of id to steal.


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