Thursday, May 30, 2013

Miss Information is not okay about this

The library has, as all libraries do, an assortment of eccentric regulars. Some are lovable; some are not.

"The One with the Hair" is a regular from the not lovable category. Her interests include rambling conspiracy theories and making racist statements. She did something or other in the computer lab and was asked to leave. This caused her to scream and carry on for a while, charmingly suggesting people "go back where they came from".  It was quite a ruckus. Later when Miss Information was in the staff room people kept asking what it was about because although it's a huge library, people could hear the shouting as far up as the fifth floor. 

Miss Information was merely a witness. She was also a witness later when a man approached the librarian in charge of the whole mess. He had a complaint about the eviction of the woman. Miss Information was curious. Was he going to support the woman's right to be disruptive? No. The man was totally on the library's side about throwing her out but he had issues with the way it was done. Specifically he was annoyed about the use of the word "okay" by the people making her leave. 

Um. Okay. Err...What?

Well it seems that the library and security staff had approached the woman to ask her to leave and when the woman responded by saying something offensive, the librarian had said "Okay, you have to go now."

Telling the woman "okay" after she'd said something horrible was an outright endorsement of her statements. The librarian should not have said okay because it was not okay. 

Right. Okay then. So when someone who is delusional spouts off about something, the library is now supposed to, what? Present a compelling argument against their crazy theory? Hold a formal debate to consider the merits of their opinion? 

Miss Information reminds herself to not be in charge of anything ever.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Miss Information *wishes* print newspapers were dead

Miss Information was in the middle of a question about short stories. The high school girls needed "either a science fiction short story or a literary-quality speculative fiction story". Before she could answer an older patron snuck up on her starboard side and interrupted. 

"I need help," the woman snapped. As the girls needed help as well and they were there first so Miss Information turned to the woman and assessed the situation. She wasn't bleeding or frothing at the mouth. She could wait a moment. She told the woman she'd be right with her. The woman huffed. Miss Information directed the girls to the literature department in another part of the library and asked the woman what she needed.

"Get me the Tribune newspaper!" she snarled. In this library the newspapers are either in use, thrown around the lounge or shelved in their proper place--which is hidden so no one can ever find it. It's mean but whatever. 

Miss Information checked the hidden place first--no luck. Someone must be on to the system. She then walked around the department looking for an abandoned copy. No luck there either but she did identify 2 individuals happily reading the Tribune at that exact moment. She reported her findings to the lady.

"All of our copies are in use," she said.
"Get me one!" the woman replied. "I have a bad knee!"

Um. Miss Information has a bad attitude but you don't see her demanding special services. She explained to the woman that ripping the newspaper out of the hands of a fellow citizen, who might also have a bad knee, was just mean spirited. She offered the woman another local paper instead and asked one of the women reading the Tribune to pass it to the cranky patron when she was finished. That woman had been glaring at the demanding woman the entire time though and was probably not giving it up any time soon.