Wednesday, June 25, 2008

"Liberry" Glossary: Needy Patron

Needy Patron
  1. A patron incapable of helping themselves with even the most minor of tasks, but who is usually intent on accomplishing the most major of tasks and will often require your help over the course of a period of hours to make this a reality. This might take the form of having no knowledge whatsoever about how to operate a computer, yet need to fill out extensive forms online. Other times, they might need to do complicated legal research on a deadline, yet have no actual idea what they are looking for, or, worse yet, merely some random numbers and letters written on a piece of paper by a possibly mentally-challenged third party all of which they expect you to not only recognize but immediately spew forth the requisite information those random characters are supposed to correspond to. Often the desired tasks of the needy patron are impossible to achieve given our limited resources, but communicating this to them is often impossible in direct proportion to their neediness. The neediness of the needy patron is also often in direct proportion to how utterly swamped you already are with other pressing tasks or other needy patrons--in other words, they love to appear on Mondays.

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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.