Friday, May 16, 2008

Miss Information is annoyed by TV guy

Miss Information is unlucky enough to work in one of the few libraries that are open Friday nights. Because of this all the nutjobs from all over the city who can’t spend an hour without librarian attention call poor beleaguered Miss Information and share their weirdness with her.

Case in point: TV guy.
He wants to know about today’s episode of Family Ties. A few frustrating moments later it transpires that he really wants to know the name of the actor who played Mr Keaton’s father. Turns out that it was John Randolph. Miss Information always liked him. Saw him on Broadway once, in fact. TV guy wants to know if he’s still acting. Miss Information guesses he’s gone to the old theatre in the sky but decides to humour the nice taxpayer.

A quick Wikipedia moment later she is able to report the sad news that John Randolph is no longer with us having died in 2005 at the ripe old age of 88.

“Well, what’d he die of?” TV guy wants to know.
“Um…he was 88,” Miss Information replies.
“But what’d he die of?” TV guy repeats.
Miss Information checks the Wikipedia entry. According to them it was “natural causes”—also known as "he was 88".
“Natural causes? What’s that mean?” TV guy wants to know.
Miss Information again suggests that 88 is pretty old and maybe they didn’t really look into the death. Maybe it was his heart, maybe his lungs, maybe he was 88, for god’s sake.

TV guy is not happy but decides to move on to his next stupid question. He wants Miss Information to find out whether any TV shows are having cast reunion movies in the near future.

Miss Information tries to beg off but he refuses to believe this is impossible. It’s in the computer he insists. Other libraries could find it. Just once Miss Information is going to respond to this statement by suggesting the customer call one of those other libraries. If those other libraries are so great why doesn’t he just marry them then?

Well, she attempts a Google search which gets her nowhere. TV guy is not going to go down quietly. He insists she look up Full House because there’s bound to be a Full House reunion in the works. Right. Sure there is. Not on this planet, however. By the way, Miss Information knows one of those Olsen twins is too thin but she’s studied pictures and still can’t figure out which one it is. Aren’t they both kind of on the stick figure side of reality?

Not satisfied, he asks about Webster. Like anyone would want to see a Webster reunion who wasn’t in the original cast. No luck there either.

The phone call ends with far too many questions about the Brady Bunch. Is the show on DVD? Where can he buy the DVDs? How much do they cost? No, not on Amazon. He wants to go to a store. Which stores have them? What about their CDs? (Like Miss Information needed any more proof he was insane…) No, he’s not interested on what’s available on Amazon. Which stores have them? Miss Information suggests HMV might be able to do a special order for them. He asks for the phone number of an HMV that is in a mall that is so far on the other side of town that it’s practically on another planet. Damn tourists.

Later TV guy phones back. He wants to know where he can buy a film projector. Miss Information looks it up in the yellow pages, suggests he do the same. He wants to know if libraries still have films and film projectors. She breaks the news that her branch dismantled its film department in the mid 1990s.
“Well, what’d ya do with the films and projectors and stuff?” TV guy asks.

Miss Information replies that she doesn’t know. Can’t she find out? TV guy wants to know.

After another 10 minutes of nonsense, Miss Information, who is alone at the desk tells TV guy that there’s a line up of people and she has to go help them for a while. TV guy suggests that those people can wait. Miss Information gets all defensive on behalf of these poor waiting people (who don’t actually exist) and insists that she can’t possibly spend any more of her life with TV guy.

Miss Information is creeped out by people with weird obsessions.


At 7:02 AM, Blogger Deborah said...

I have a similar problem with a patron we'll call "Ralph." He is obsessed with celebrities bearing the same given name. His questions always involve someone with the name "Ralph" and usually football: who was the guy who played with such and such a college team about 2 or maybe 20 years ago, named Ralph? Etc.

At 10:13 PM, Blogger E. McGrew said...

We have "The Roselyn Sanchez" guy. Calls in and wants to know everything she's been in and if we have it. The problem is, he gives us her CHARACTER NAMES, which we don't immediately recognize. And he slurs his words, making it harder. Every time we end up looking it up on IMDB, and every time we find out we only have two of the things she's been in.

At 7:13 PM, Blogger No one asked us said...

I understand your pain. I think I have had the same patron on the phone, however he wanted the home address of a girl who was on Degrassi. He seemed stunned when I flat out told him I would not give it to him as I felt it was inappropriate and then he wanted to speak to my in charge person which at the time was me. So that was fun. Oh and he likes some Mickey Rooney made for TV Christmas movie.

At 2:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You should tell him that there was going to be a TV movie where Cindy Brady married Webster, and they moved next door to the Tanner family in San Francisco, but the production company couldn't get funding. (The funding hinged on them getting John Randolph for a part, and we all know how that ended.)

Maybe his head will explode.

At 1:44 PM, Blogger The.Effing.Librarian said...

I am not lying about this: I treat these questions like I know nothing about the topic, like I've never see a TV show. I just keep asking, "What is that?" "No, I'm not familiar with that" and "Really? A show about an old white man who adopts two black kids? that sounds like hilarity will reign. Is it on TV now?"

It takes practice, but you can pretend you know nothing about pretty much anything if you try.

At 10:03 AM, Blogger Sunshine Morningstar said...

Aaaahhh!! How annoying!
My mom sent me the link to your blog because she knew I could appreciate the ridiculousness of certain situations (having worked in a number of jobs that require public service).

Great writing :)

At 3:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We only allow TV guy 3 calls a day and we track his calls so that he cannot ask the same question again (such as, which actor will play the Incredible Hulk?, only asked about 1000 times, before we instituted our rule)


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