Friday, October 26, 2007

I'll take "Places you shouldn't go" for $300, Alex.

A man I'd not seen before came in and passed a book across the circ-desk to me. I checked it in, closed out the screen without looking and turned back to him as he was still standing there.

"I need a book on electrical wiring," he said.

"Sure thing."

I looked one up for him and, as no other patrons were in need of help, walked him down to the nonfiction stacks, right to the aisle and shelf where it was located.

Twenty minutes later, he returned to the circ-desk, set his book down and looked up at me expectantly.

"Can I scan your library card, please?" I asked.

"Don't have one."

"You don't have it with you?"

"I don't have one at all."

I paused.

"You just turned in a book to us, right?"

He nodded.

"So, at some point you did have a card, right?"

"It was on my wife's card," the man said. "Use hers." And he then did that familiar, dismissive hand-gesture toward our computer's monitor, the international sign language for "Just make that dealie do the deal."

"I'm sorry, but I have to have her actual card in order to look up the record," I said.

The man's eyes flashed and I could tell he was about to go THERE. Yep, he was about to secure himself a place in the book of Patrons Who Don't Have a Library Card and, Furthermore, Plan to Throw a Shit-Fit Tantrum when Confronted by the Fact that they WILL be Needing One. We've had to deal with listed members of this particular book for quite some time and will continue on into the future.

"I can hold this for you here..." I began. And as I said it, the man's eyes flashed again, he opened his mouth and proceeded down the road to THERE. "...OR," I continued, interrupting right back while flipping a "liberry" card application onto the circ-desk with all the nimbleness of a very nimble ninja, "we can just let you fill out one of these and give you your own card."

The man started to go THERE again, paused, seemed to think a moment, perhaps considering the logic of the suggestion, and then closed his mouth. He picked up the pen I was even then nimbly offering him.

Didn't even give me shit about his drivers license or anything.


Holley T said...

a nimble win indeed, juice!

Ordinary Janet said...

It's a good thing you have those forms and pens handy for ninja stealth and don't have to search all over for them. Timing is everything.

Dances With Books said...

Holy crapola, you actually managed to get him to go someplace else, so to speak. I am surprised the guy "fell" for that one. But hey, you get what you can when you can.

librarianne said...

Nicely done.

The.Effing.Librarian said...

"buddha sat before a wall, and when he arose, he was enlightened." you are that wall. and one day you will teach me, oh master.

PiratePrincess said...

Don't you love it? A library card is needed to check out library books. Who would've thought? lol.. You handled that very well! :D

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.