Lady walks into my library looking like she'd just finished a teeth whitening commercial in which she'd done so many takes smiling at the camera that it must have felt weird for her to relax her cheek muscles. I mean, she was uncomfortably close to that "so obnoxiously happy you'll have what she's having" kind of happy. Not that I'm complaining about that! I'll take an overly happy patron over rude, grumpy, angry, and inconsiderate any day. I think perhaps I'd just been drinking too much of that hater-ade and was trying to mask my jealously for annoyance. So obnoxiously happy lady approaches me at the circulation desk to return some books and in good customer service fashion I swallow my pride by striking up a completely trivial conversation (I really try hard NOT to do this simply because I feel that small talk most often occurs when you don't really wish to have a conversation with a person). Well, conversation initiated. Tis the way in the world of customer service. Le sigh. She told me about the book she read, how much she enjoyed it, and how much better it could have been if only the main character did not take the lord's name in vain. I attempted a quick explanation about characters and the mechanisms authors use in creating character attributes.....including their flaws. You know, kind of like ALL human beings because these characters must come to life. But she seemed to have totally spaced out at this point like I'm sure most of you are and so we moved on to other purposes for her visit. She was looking for a book. Now, I can't remember the exact title, but I cannot forget the joy that overcame me having a chance to tell a cheesy joke because of the title of the book: A Husband to Hold. Literally, she asked, "Can you find me a husband to hold?" I love the way my brain is wired! I came back at her with "Well, this is a library so I'm not sure I can find that sort of thing for you here." It took her a second to get what I was saying. Then her smile gave way to laughter. One of the things I love best about my personality is my love for making people laugh and my ability to typically do so.
I'm sure you can only imagine the types of people I deal with on a day to day basis. Recently there was: lady who finds comfort in her cat curling up on her neck at night as she lay in bed. She asked if we had any books with corporate logos pictured so she could have help with some sort of game she was playing. I found a website and printed out the top 250 logos for her. She and I talked pets and I acted like her request was nothing out of the ordinary. She thanked me for the talk.
Then there's the man who is convinced there are aliens among us. He is in the library very often printing out UFO information, pictures of blurry alien looking figures, and he even had one with Hitler talking to an alien. Totally not shopped! (lingo for photoshopped) It's common sense that someone as evil as Hitler had been plotting even more destruction and chaos with a being who came from lightyears away, right? I wonder if they traded vegetarian recipes and talked about their cures for flatulance. I spoke with the man like nothing was strange with his seemingly strong obsession that the government is in cahoots with spacemen. Some people are convinced things are hidden from them including human interaction with beings from other galaxies. In the grand scheme of things, his paranoia turned hobby isn't that wacky.
There's the man who smells like kitty litter who likes to have someone print out the moon phases for the year. Request = not strange. Smell = do you assist your cats in fecal burial?
Then there's Iva......the oragami obsessed woman. She had me copy, at 10 cents a page, a 52 page book with instructions on creating various holiday oragami figures. This wouldn't have been such a big deal had she not been so rude and demanding. She's definitely entered into "crazy old lady who thinks because she's old that everyone owes her something" status.
There's the dude in his 20s whose cell is never on silent so when it rings in the library, Papa Roach is blarring from his pocket like they are having a concert from the year 2000 in his cargo pocket. The other day he was texting and had the volume turned WAY up. Everytime he tapped a letter: CLICK CLICK CLICK CLICK CLICK! I was about to go insane! So I went over to him and asked if he could turn it down. His response: Turn what down? Um, your phone because the noise coming from you tapping the letters on your screen is obnoxiously loud which is making me scary close to ripping the thing out of your hand and screaming "PAPA ROACH FOR A RINGTONE DOES NOT MAKE YOU LOOK COOL! IF ANYTHING IT MAKES YOU LOOK LIKE A GIANT SPAZ FOR THINKING ANYONE WANTS TO HEAR PAPA ROACH AS INDICATION THAT SOMEONE IS CALLING YOU LET ALONE THAT THERE'S A CHANCE YOU ARE HERE VIA TIME MACHINE WITHOUT YOUR BIG PUFFY VEST AND A COOL CRAZY OLD MAN BY YOUR SIDE (Back to the Future shout out! what what!)!!!! Plus, something you were obviously never taught as a child: you are in a LIBRARY......a public place in which it's common knowledge, or at least one would assume, that you be quiet and polite because there are actually other people around you trying to concentrate on what they are doing. The lack of consideration I've seen over the past several years working in a library is pathetic.
My mission statement: I am willing to relate to you and be considerate in assisting with any requests you may have for me in the library, but if you show a complete lack of awareness for those around you and how your actions might affect them....I WILL turn into Sweet Brown: I AIN'T GOT TIME FOR THAT!