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I have to go home, my shoe came untied

April 28, 2011

Now’s the time in Sprockets when we post the runoffs. The ideas that couldn’t quite comprise a post of their own. The microblog stories. First up, we have a lady who likes to come in and tell us how bad our light bulbs are for our eyes. As she puts it, you see that light outside, does that look like what’s in here? Our light is apparently too yellow and what we should have is white light, or something like that. This woman is very concerned about light because one of her eyes has already left her and she’s not about to lose the other one. Despite the fact that we’ve told her many times that we do not control these things and directed her to a comment card, she keeps complaining. I have a feeling she does this wherever she goes. Spreading the word about light.

Last semester in s505 we read an article about maintaining objectivity in the reference interview and making sure to not in any way communicate judgment. Now, I have a tendency to hum to myself while I’m searching for things sometimes. After reading that article I found myself wondering what my humming was communicating to patrons. I also tend to sigh, I’m told, when confronted with something vaguely confounding. Who knows what that says to patrons.

Think back to my favorite patron. The guy who only ever wants a guest pass. That guy is really fantastic. One time he came in wearing a baseball hat and I didn’t recognize him. This was also the day I thought I saw him at another computer past the hour his guest pass got him and was sad because I thought he’d joined the ranks of those who cheat the library. As it turned out, it was just someone in an identical hat. He must have sensed my sadness because he has never worn a hat again. At least when I’ve been here.

A fellow just walked in barefoot. Yup. You’re not allowed to do that. I spotted him with my eagle eyes and security quickly directed him to the list of library rules and then sent him on his way. From the look of his feet and tie-dye shirt, he was just being a hippie. I haven’t seen that since I was at Oberlin and even those barefoot hippies would wear shoes inside.

I really garble the word “digits.” Sadly it is a word that I have to say a lot because people tend to forget the password for their library cards and most times it’s the last four numbers of their phone number. For some reason, whenever I’m asked this question I tell people it’s the last four digits instead of the last four numbers. I’m not sure why I do this and I often wonder if people understand what word I’m attempting to say.

Some people, generally children, expect us to remember what other child they were with. I have had multiple children come up to me wondering if I’ve seen the child they were with when they spoke to me earlier. Here’s the thing. Unless they’re a regular, someone I know, or curious looking, the second someone leaves my desk I forget what they look like. Especially if they were only here to get a guest pass. If it was a longer interaction, sometimes I will remember the person, but not always. I’m just very absent-minded and I don’t keep track of random children wandering the library. I generally tend to ignore children as a rule.

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