Mrs. C was out of town on yet another meeting today, so Mrs. B and I held down the fort at the liberry, taking turns listening to asses implode during phone calls from those desperate to talk to Mrs. A or Mrs. C.
I regaled Mrs. B with my
recent tale of woe and financial difficulty. Then I told her a bit of
what went on during our typical Monday Mass Chaos, specifically about Chester's dumb ass. Mrs. B hates Chester even more than I do, which is a considerable amount to start with.
I also began to tell Mrs. B about Mr. & Mrs. Thrill,
the couple who came in at the crack of 5 yesterday and got all worked
up and threatened to never come back because I told them we were
closing. Before I could even start to speak of them, though, they walked
in the door.
(ADOPTS HOMER SIMPSON VOICE) Mmmm... Synchronicity.
don't think they were expecting, nor hoping I would be there when they
came in because both of them looked suddenly sheepish at having their
feet caught being set in a building they had said they weren't coming
back to. They quietly mosied around the room and eventually chose a
couple of movies to borrow. I was glad I hadn't been in the middle of my
story to Mrs. B when they came in, because I had a hard enough time not
cracking up laughing while they were there as it was.
was back for much of the day, though with considerably less muddy boots
this time. I gave em a good once-over at-distance inspection when he
first came in. He came and went throughout the afternoon. Finally, at 4,
he came back and asked if any of us had any kind of automotive repair
knowledge in our heads. Seems his truck wouldn't start.
it do when you try to start it?" I said, armed with a cache of broken
car knowledge from my many years as owner and driver of unreliable
"It just clicks."
"Sounds like the starter," I told him. "Happened to me once. I had to have mine replaced."
phoned a repair shop he knew. They told him it was the starter and that
he should go and hit it with a hammer. We loaned him a hammer and
watched him go, but neither Luigi nor any of us actually knew WHERE the
starter was. Finally, we told him to phone the repair shop down the road
and see if they would come up and hit his starter with a hammer for
him. They did. Luigi's truck started right up.
most of this was going on, I was trying to take my break and was using
the internet. Our internet connection is still very unfaithful as LOCAL
ISPnet has still not finished replacing its routers, or some such. So
the net is up and down and up and down throughout the day, which just
pisses off our usual internet crowd something fierce. While I was trying
to use it, someone came in, but I didn't look up at them since I was
technically on-break. Still, my Spidey-sense got a tingle.
failing to get the net to do anything I wanted, I gave up and returned
to the circulation desk. A few minutes later Mrs. B came through the
children's room carrying a small stack of kids books on tape. She looked
irritated. She began mouthing words to me. After a couple of tries, I
read her lips to say "CHESTER's in the children's room."
bolted around the desk and caught sight of Chester's ratty vest and
stupid little short-brimmed cap. He was indeed standing in the kids
room. Why? Cause there was a pre-teen girl in there, that's why. Dammit!
B knows that I have no problem making Chester's life miserable by
following him around conspicuously, so she passed her kid's tapes off to
me so I'd at least have an excuse to harass him. When I entered the
kids' room, Chester was gamely trying to look like he was engrossed in
one of our Who's Who in West Virginia books we keep on a high shelf in
there. He had his back turned to the little girl, so he couldn't
be suspected of doing anything untoward. This just pissed me off. I
wanted to grab him by the arm and say, "Can I have a word with you
outside?" then drag him out before he could even reply. I wanted to hurl
him out the door and give him the speech I've been writing in my head
for the past two years. I want to tell him that we know good and damn
well what his game is, that he likes looking at little girls and that he
has no business being in the children's area. Oh, and we also know his
sick ass has been stealing our Teen People's. I wanted to tell
him that I better not see him so much as fart in the kid's room EVER
again or even look in the same direction as another patron, let alone a
little girl, or I won't hesitate to call 911.
trouble with this is, no matter how much we KNOW in our heart that this
truly is his game, he has still done nothing illegal. It would be one
thing if a patron complained to us about him. I'd be on his ass like
carbs on potatoes if someone would just complain about him. But I can't
exactly throw him out for leafing through a Who's Who in WV which
can only be found in the children's room. I didn't even see him staring
at the girl this time. I just know he was doing it before I got there.
instead of assaulting the man, I parked myself in the doorway and
stared at him. When he saw me, he put the book back on the shelf and
gathered up his notebook and a cluster of loose paper that he'd put on
the kids-books on tape shelf and wandered back toward the computer hall.
I didn't even have time to move before he was back, though.
"Uhm, can I... Do the computers... Uh, How do I?" he stammered, jutting a thumb back toward the computer hall.
have to sign in on the clip-board up front," I said, jutting my own
thumb behind me. It's only the 834th time I've had to tell him this,
because he asks that EVERY SINGLE %$#!ing time he wants to use a
computer. Chester went to sign up and I went back to log him on. As I
did, I noticed the top page of his stack of loose paper was from the
local community college. I don't normally snoop, but this is %*#!ing
Chester, after all. The page was a note giving him instructions on how
to apply for financial aid. Hmm. Maybe all those FAFSA forms he's been
taking from us were for something after all? More likely, he just wants
to take classes so he'll have an excuse to sit and stare at girls. I
guess at least the girls would be of age then, but he's still a sick
After Chester sat down at the computer,
Mrs. B loudly announced that she thought she'd just stay in the
children's room to straighten up a few books. I went back to the
circulation desk, where I had a good view of the door between the
computer hallway and the children's room. I still had Luigi's borrowed
hammer and I decided to keep it on the desk, if for no other reason than
Chester might notice it and speculate as to what I was planning to
gavel with it.
I expected Chester would start his traditional slow walk through the children's room in a quest for a pencil routine, but he stayed put for at least 10 minutes. Finally, he did get up and come to the desk, carrying his stack of stuff.
"Is there something wrong with the computer?" he asked. "It won't go anywhere."
I smiled. "It's been up and down all day. LOCAL ISPnet's working on it."
"When will they get it fixed?"
"Who knows?" I said. "We'd hoped they'd have it fixed already. It's been a week."
Chester looked irritated. I love
seeing Chester irritated. He stood there for a few more seconds,
allowing me to bask in his frustration, then he left for good, or at
least as good as it got today.
He didn't seem to notice the hammer, though.