Thursday, December 23, 2010

Another year gone by and still Miss Information is not psychic

Miss Information was stationed at the aptly named Information Desk last night. This desk is conveniently situated so that Miss Information has the best view of people floundering helplessly with the self-checkout system. Last night she became aware that there was a young woman standing motionless at one of the terminals. She wasn't doing anything, not pressing buttons, not looking around hopelessly and not gesturing wildly for help.

Based upon nothing, Miss Information leapt to the conclusion that the woman had finished checking out and was waiting for her friends at the next station. A few minutes later Miss Information noticed that the "friends" had moved on but the woman still remained completely motionless, staring directly at the wall. It was bizarre behaviour, so Miss Information went to investigate.

She asked if there was anything she could do for the woman. The woman replied that the "machine" said there was a problem with her card.

Oh. It was clear now that the woman was not simply standing motionless as Miss Information had previously suspected. No, she was trying to communicate her situation telepathically to the staff. Damn. Miss Information always forgets to sign up for those "Clairvoyance for Library Workers" training sessions.

Here's a tip for the rest of you. If you need help while you're at the library, go to the nearest service point and actually speak to a human being directly. They still may not be of much assistance, but standing staring vacantly doesn't work at all.


At 12:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did too work! You went over eventually, didn't you? ;)

At 1:19 PM, Blogger Library said...

I have seen this behavior at self checkout counters in supermarkets. Luckily they are equipped flashing beacons to notify staff that there is an issue and snap the confused back to life. Else, they might also have a similar situation were a person has a emotional breakdown leading to a catatonic state.

At 5:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe she took the sign literally and checked out of herself.

At 9:07 AM, Blogger Carlyv said...

Maybe she assumed it was like the supermarket, where the head cashier gets a message on their screen that someone needs help. Because things like that are often automated, maybe she thought she was being polite by not acting impatient or frustrated.

Anyway, Merry Christmas Miss Information! Thanks for lots of fun reading over the past year.


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