Saturday, August 4, 2012

A Typical Saturday at the Library

The following scenes were culled from a combination of Saturdays at the microcosm of society known as the local public library.

Seated directly in front of the reference desk are arguing twin sisters in their 50s at dueling computers with the husband of one twin sat in between them wearing a pair of very large headphones. They are bickering about what ingredient should be used in a sauce. One twin then tries to give members of the library staff a half eaten danish. There are no takers.

A library computer patron arrives to upload photographs from online stores selling lingerie so that he may enlarge the photos and zero in on the crotches. He cannot be told to stop because he is not on a filtered site. The fact that he does this makes him creepier than anyone going into a strip club on a weekday.

A mother and her son are seated at a computer arguing. Well, the son is arguing with the mother. Well, he is belittling her and calling her stupid because she is unaware of how to open a Power Point document. The fact that he also does not know how to do this escapes his attention. The mother is ostensibly helping him with his homework and from what I can tell, his homework assignment involves texting his punk ass friends while his technologically challenged, ever suffering mother types up his report on turtles. She gets up in frustration to use the restroom saying that if, while she is in the bathroom, her son uses Facebook she is going to "beat the snot out" of him.

A patron calls the reference desk from her cellphone to ask if something can be done about the loud group of gentlemen poring over a blueprint in the middle of the "quiet study area". This mystery patron is seated somewhere within the library but wants to remain anonymous. She also does not yet realize that libraries stopped being quiet the moment cellphones became popular. The strangeness of receiving a call that was coming "from inside the house!" provides ample chuckling.

A girl of about 11 years old approaches the reference desk excitedly to ask if we have the next installment of a series about warrior cats in a fantasy world. When she learns that our copy is checked out, the crestfallen expression that envelops her young face is enough to break a heart. Her mother tries to comfort her as she laments "But I just wanted to know what happens next!"

An elderly woman calls the library asking for information on assisted living facilities. As the conversation continues she says the following: "I'm very worried I won't get three meals a day. I don't know who would deny an old woman alone at least three meals. It is just such a shame that you don't know how long you are going to live. If I knew that, I'd just stay in this apartment, where I've lived for ten years and eaten three meals a day."

The program at the library is an "Elvis Impersonator" only he looks nothing like Elvis. He is wearing a Party City wig and sounds nothing like Elvis. The room is sold out. There is no one in there under the age of 65. When fake Elvis proclaims in his very, very Long Island accent "The 1950s! Those were the days huh?"  a woman from the audience shouts "I wish I could go back!" Fake Elvis begins "Don't Be Cruel" and the crowd remains seated, swaying back and forth quietly.

A young woman calls the library asking for help on downloading an audiobook onto her iPod. The librarian becomes exasperated when it becomes clear that modern technology often makes things more complicated than they ever needed to be.

The librarian witnessing these snippets desires to go to the break room and eat a donut from the box gifted to the staff by the defensive driving instructor. She finishes typing and does just that.

1 comment:

  1. Awww--I remember that little girl's pain--at least it was only checked out. When I was a kid, our library (more often than not) only carried the first book in any given series. Infuriating!