Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Actual Conversations Heard in Actual Libraries #51

SETTING: My "liberry," the circ desk. A patron approaches to sign up for a computer. Because Mrs. A was recently at the desk, however, the pen from the sign up sheet had been removed from the sign up sheet clip-board, used elsewhere and deposited into the pen jar, as in accordance with tradition. I fish it back out from among the scant few pens and broken pencils there and pass it to the patron. I'm annoyed at how few pens are in the cup, for just a month ago Mrs. A brought in two full packs of cheap crappy pens to replace the other cheap crappy pens that disappeared before that.

ME: Where the heck are all our pens?

MRS. B: I don't know. We were just asking that this morning. Oh, that reminds me... Did you hear what they found that was clogging the toilet?

ME: No, no, what?

MRS. B: A pen.

ME: A pen?!

MRS. B: Yep. It was wedged in there sideways. It would let the liquid through but not the solids.

ME: Oh, please tell me we kept it! We should save it to loan out to patrons. `Heh heh, sure... you can borrow a pen. You can borrow our special pen.'

Alas, we had not.

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An employee of a small town "liberry" chronicles his quest to remain sane while dealing with patrons who could star in a short-lived David Lynch television series.