Thursday, June 30, 2005

Hey Boss

(as I push a cart of boxes...) Hey Boss- you moving out?
(I wish).


Porn to Precalc jerk is wearing a pair of white socks that are made into makeshift sandals with red duct tape.


Man without cane (usually has one) almost takes a tumble.


Woman slaps down a stack of historical documents and asks are these valuable? They were signed by Lincoln. You mean it isn't online or nothin? I wonder if any of these old people would know.


I show an older man the sorting shelves- the place where books are placed before they are shelved. He can't believe it and says, honey, let me show you something- this is where they put the books that were just returned. Then they talk to another guy who is milling around. I made their day and they found a treasure trove!


Porn to Precalc jerk literally has his head in the College Algebra book.


More summer reading kids:


Publishers Clearing House- who is that outfit? They are supposed to be coming here today.


And my knitting class had 6 students. Two of them actually picked up the technique. The others were frustrated. One girl asked if she could keep the needles because they would make really cool drum sticks, and demonstrated for several minutes.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Come Again!

Come Again Posted by Hello

Today's Tidbits

O. Henry meets Rapunzel as girl with waist length hair asks where she can sell it.


As the literacy center is being constructed as we speak, Mr. I Can't Read introduces himself again. He tells me to come closer, but I don't. I haven't read my whole life: age 21, 30, 60, 4, and I've been single my whole life. Then, he squints his eyes and lets out a shrill shrieks that scares me. I tell him I can't be of any help.

I can't wait to introduce him to the liberrian who will run the literacy center. She has been working in the background at headquarters for the past few years. Welcome to the branch life; here is your first candidate.


Do you have a phone book for City X?
Young lady, do you know how important that city is? All my paperwork is there.


Do you have videos on traveling to Costa Rica?
Sure, let me show you where they are.
Wow, this is better service than the grocery store!


Life here is so unpredictable; sometimes I feel like I'm in Whose Line is it Anyway?


Marian's Eclectic Movie Man asks for the following titles: Because of Winn Dixie, Southie, Germinal, Taxi, New House Hotel. Then he says, "I'm just going to pick up some random stuff!"


Mystery Weeds- Janet Evanovich- Hard Eight- Adopted by a "Nice Old Lady"

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Mystery Section Weeds

Cadillac Jukebox: Do we have you hooked yet? Happy Birthday, Kristen & Bill.

(apparently not)

Poodle Springs
: Merry Christmas to my Dad, 1989. A father who has so much in common with his daughter, mystery novels, bowling, poker, trivia, spirits, humor... Love Joanna.



Do you have the phones I can send in to Washington DC? I wrote a song, I don't know the lyrics.

I figure out she wants legal forms about copyrighting her song so I show her the books.

So I just tear out the one I need?


Do you have a dictionary?

I show him the reference copy. He looks up the word substantiate and asks me to tell him what it means. Then he pulls out a legal paper about child abuse and asks does that mean this charge is true?

Sorry, I can't interpret the law.


Yes, we actually have a typewriter. Today an old man asked me if I could help him make the font bigger. I thought of introducing him to the word processor.

Wherever I am

Old man writes down his name and tells me a way I can remember it- he draws a little sun and says wherever I am the sun always shines and the sky is always blue. Then he tells me about a dragon tape he checked out and how he is having a second childhood. He is going to memorize the dragon song. He even sings the first couple lines. He tells me it is terrific, you should check it out!

Don't believe you

Caller- I need to find out what part of town 123 Main Street is.

I look at the map and tell her it is in east county. She doesn't believe me. I ask her if she has any more information that might help me with my search. She tells me it is none of my business and asks to talk to someone who knows something. I happily turn the call over to my patient colleague.

Thurgood Marshall

I need information about the landmark case of 1995 that Thurgood Marshall overturned.
Thurgood Marshall was not on the supreme court then; he was dead.
Well it was that black guy.
Clarence Thomas?

Give me his phone number. If you can't find it, forget it, I'll just call 411.

What do you mean?

You don't have the contact information for Race Magazine? No sir, I'm sorry I can't locate it. The only piece of information remotely close to your subject pertains to ethnicity, not race cars. Damn, I can't believe it, it is one of the leading magazines of the world. When I find a copy I'll bring it in and show it to you.

You do that.

More names

More names of kids in the reading program (not joking)-



One of our customers is trying to write his life story about a crime he committed in the 1970's. About once a month he asks us to research articles about the incident. We already have a file of everything we've done in the past, so we just pull it from the back room. (Of course I always play his game and pretend I've never talked to him). Today he wanted help with the ancient microfilm reader that I'm ready to throw out the window.


Our summer reading program for young adults has a total of 2 readers. Oh well, if I can just change one life...

Monday, June 27, 2005

Saturday, June 25, 2005

More Max

Colleague- Max, can you please keep it down? (constant conversations with self)
Max- Oh shit, was I being loud again?
Then Max walks by looking for the James Bond book. I show him where it is and he mumbles he bought the video at Walmart, Blockbuster, blah blah blah. Thanks Amy!

Makes me laugh

The man from Africa who wants to buy a car from Japan, wholesale, that is refrigerated so he can transport flowers and meat makes me laugh!

Friday, June 24, 2005

Attention hungry guy

AHG must sign along to the rap videos. One woman asked if he is drunk. Then he screamed out thank you for letting me using the computer. I am sorry for the noise.

Completely obnoxious!

Mother and son

Mother and son who have been camping out and watching videos all day are told their time is up. She responds- that is stupid shit!


Max tells me he went home and took a shower. Did the sweat go away? Man it is hot. How hot is it I wonder? I bet 90. Where's your coworker? I really like that sweater. I love the knit. A nice knit. I have a beige one and a blue one, but I am not wearing either today. Can you tell I have been sweating, but I went home and took a shower.

Good old Max.

Level of Noise

I told the group of attention starved guys that they had to keep their voices down because I received some complaints. One of them said what does that have to do with us? I said this is a library and it should be quiet in here. He said we didn't know that. We apologize. Any more complaints, you tell them to leave. The complaint department is closed for the day.

Digging through the purse for the card

A woman was digging through her wallet for her card. She found a ten then twenty dollar bill and said - wow, I should keep standing here; I'm making money just looking for my card!

More weeding

Happy Birthday Phyllis-

Too bad you left your card that someone printed out especially for you in the book:)


In Pulp Masters by Ed Gorman I found a funeral / memorial about a man who died last September.

More genealogy

My grandmother lived till the age of 91. She had the wrong maiden name. She died when I was 26. I tried to ask my grandfather some stories and he told me lies. That little rascal... that little bugger...

And she continues her story about her second cousin once removed junior, etc.

Genealogy is the subject I can't stand!

Too specific

I'd like an aerial map from the 1920's of the 2300 block of (street).

Ref books don't circulate

But no one understands the concept-- Man asks why, is it because doctors and lawyers come in here?


Where can I find a book written by Mark Twan?

I love weeding

I'm working on the mystery section. Today I found this little note written in grandmotherly script-

There are far too maney four letter f and s words in this book not needed in the storey! Rancho Maria by Jerry Oster.

Can't help

Man wheels up in his electric wheelchair: I'd like to check my existence.

Me- Genealogy?

Man- No, I don't know who my father is. My mother just died and I am not listed as one of her sons. I don't know when or where I was born.

Me- Do you have a birth certificate?

Man- Sure, but I don't believe it.

Me- Sounds like you need to talk to a lawyer.

Thursday, June 23, 2005


Where can I store my trailer for thirty dollars? Or else it gets impounded.

Porn to Precalc guy

The Porn to Precalc guy continued to ask me questions about x squared etc. I asked- where is your assignment, your textbook? Perhaps your school has a tutoring center? Or can your instruction recommend a tutor? He said he lost the book and can't remember the assignment. Uh huh.

He walked away in his flip flops and just one black sock. He walked in the sandals in a perpendicular manner if you can picture that...

not a doctor

"No Problem" guy shows me his arm and says skin doctor?

I know I am not one, so don't show me your symptoms. Thanks.

how do you say

Non-English speaker wants to know what the word similar means. Like, almost the same, not like? Which? Circular conversation continues... I should have pulled out the Sesame Street books and videos: One of these things is not like the other, one of these things is not the same...

I'm Mad

Man who reads Indian books- I'm mad. Know why I'm mad? This book has writing in it. I'm mad.

Me- I'll take care of it.

Man- Thanks boss, are you mad at me? I don't want to get in trouble.

Kids these days

Today I sifted through the names of the kids in the summer reading program. I think that when they are born the mothers randomly choose letters from a hat and scramble them up to decide what to name their kid. Here are some examples:

Leighlynn (sort of cool)

Where = Bobby and Suzie?

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Random Red bear

Random red bear I will return tomorrow. Truly, no Elmo.

Random Red Bear Posted by Hello

Today = brought to you by the letter R

Today is brought to you by the letter R: R as in RED.
I just realized I am roasting in here. Not rare. What a rip-roaring good time. Quite remarkable. Let me record it. I reinforced the rules, helped people with resumes, and said you must remain in line; no running.
Horse track fanatic gave me an ugly red bear. See picture. This bear is no ELMO. No ANIMAL. Not even a Baby Koozebanian. Whatever, you get the point.
Two kids roll around the filthy rug like beached whales while their oblivious mother does email.
Sixteen year old girl asks several times for help on her driving exam. I should really say, hon, I failed that thing at least three times, which is really the truth.
Keanu Reeves fan wants me to print her a slew of pictures. Razzle dazzle.
Rambunctiously rude, attention starved guy must sniff as loud as he can and sing along with the rap videos. And burp.
Kids- Can you tell us about the summer reading program? We heard like it is free or something.
Girl at least 20: This is so embarrassing, can you please spell share?
Me: As in ration?
Several people- I can't get into Hotmail.
Me: It must be down for repair.
Then I restart the computer for the umpteenth time of the day.

I have run out of steam and I need to rest and relax, get some rapid eye movement.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Today is brought to you by the letter W

W, w for wolf, w for why am I here?
Freaky man who wrote me the love letter strolls by the desk with a bottle of Tabasco Sauce falling out of his fanny pack.
A Michael Jackson look alike came today. So thin, light skin, dark straight hair... he was here.
Mr. I can't read waves.
I can't find the animal shelter's site.
Go to Google dot com.
Types in dgle space cm.
One of the sisters (the louder one) comes in to tell me she and her sister chipped in to buy a new computa. Her daughta sent her pictures, she can't open them. She called her daughta last night, but she didn't return the call because she was at the baseball game. Probably tired from the game. She was interviewed in a 2 and a half interview for a job (when she had laryngitis). An olda woman got the job, but then quit so her daughta got the job. (Shows me the business card). I want you to see this e-card from my daughta. From Epcot. Isn't that neat?
Do you have a soda machine here?
Did you know that the lady who owns the coffee shop across the street is moving to Ethiopia?
I'll trade you these (five loud) kids.
Here's the story about W as in Why am I here:

Grumpy know-it-all man wants to find out the animal and flower associated with the name Florence. Do you mean the Chinese year of the (animal)? No, do I look Chinese to you? And I don't want the Hallmark definition either. I show him a few genealogy books but it isn't sufficient. Then I look for sites on He's an impatient curmudgeon. I ask him how he knows that there is a particular animal assigned to each name and he says I have a good memory, but I have been researching it for 30 years before you were born. I can't remember exactly where. But I can't let Florence go to her grave without her knowing which animal represents her. He says may I suggest something, stop the computer. Libraries have all the answers, show me the books, ask your colleagues. My colleague is busy, but he butts in her conversation anyway. She eventrually asks him how he knows that there is an animal associated with the name. He says I don't mind repeating myself, I have a good memory, but I can't remember everything. I just don't know. For instance, my name is Ralph, the animal that corresponds is a wolf.
And W is for... when do I get to go home?

Sunday, June 19, 2005

101 times a day

My headphones don't work.

Yes they do. Minimize the window. Go to the volume control on the desktop. Unclick the mute buttons.


That = rocket science.

Our Security Guard- always alert

Always Alert Security Guard Posted by Hello

Oh great

The horse racing fan said he'd bring me a red stuffed animal next time. Not looking forward to that. I'll give it away to the summer reading kids, after I take a picture and upload it of course. Blog material if nothing else.

Isn't she nice!

Our colleage at the neighbor branch----

The other day I was weeding in the 900s (a notoriously underused section, except for state reports and travel planning). A little old lady watched me load books onto a cart, take them to the back room, then bring them (well, most of them, anyway) back and return them to the shelf. After several loads, she finally asked me what I was doing. If I've learned anything in my years of working in a public library, it's not to answer this question truthfully (throwing away books!) because you never know how people will react. So I said "I'm checking to see which books need to be repaired or replaced." She sighed and said "Oh, you are SO sweet to think of that!"


Max: Do you have Car and Driver, Road and Track, I haven't found it for 3 months.

We walk over to the magazines...

Max: You smell good... did you take a bath or shower?
Me: Yes.
Max: Me too. A bath and a shower. 15 minutes.


Max: Oh shit, I'm too loud, aren't I.

2 hours later-

Max: Do you have that white James Bond 007 book, the one with the silver writing? It usually has the number 823 on it and is near Shakespeare (822). I know that because 823 is my birthday. I'll be 48. Do you have any bookmarkers?

I give him one.

Max: Do you have any bookmarkers thicker than that? I have four James Bond 007 movies. (lists them off).

Friday, June 17, 2005


Totally crazy... another Avon lady showed up today. She is the 4th one!

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Too much fun Thursday

The guy has style: blue flannel pants pulled up six inches above the waist, uggs to the shins, and a red plaid flannel shirt...where was the night cap?
I shouldn't speak, today I wore socks and sandals. I deserve a citation from the fashion police.


Max: Hi Amy, I thought you had the day off.


I tell a man in his 80's that the author he mentioned has materials in the children's section. He says, don't say that, those books are very interesting. For example, I don't want to read about how Oliver Cromwell was born, what color was his belly button...


Do you want me to print this? It is 72 pages.
(There's a word I haven't heard in a long time).


Can I help you?
Yes, can you get all the kids to go outside and do a sundance. This weather is horrible.


I wanna know what is going on with these plates. Earthquakes?


Max: You know where I was yesterday when I wasn't here?
Me: Where?
Max: I went to see Batman. It was pretty good, 2 hours and 20 minutes. Pretty good. See, I wrote it down. I have a list of 9 videos I am going to buy.


How do I know this DVD will work on my player?
I think he remembers the VHS / Beta retro days.


My bus tour was cancelled at the last hour, the last minute, the last second.


Two Avon ladies (not the regular one)- Wow, oh my! If I recruit an Avon sales representative and they submit a $50 order or more, then I get this prize pack worth $35! Wow. Take a look at this, a free lipstick I got for going to the meeting. (Smears it on). See, it is collectible!

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

beWitched beWednesday

I stopped by Michael's before work to buy a few poster frames. When I was waiting in line one of my Sci-Fi readers was passing out 40% off coupons to everyone in line. She recognized me, and told me I need to visit the local theme park. That's what she did yesterday. I didn't tell her I used to work there for umpteen years.


The Scribner's woman from yesterday calls and asks for the book she can't identify. She tells me well the old lady with the white hair said I could have the book yesterday if I just call. Sorry hun.


Man who looks at the Indian books points out 2 pages that are highlighted: I didn't do it, are you mad at me?


Do you have the Geo Gaffney books?
Joe Gaffney.
Geo Gaffey.
Can you please write that down?


Kissy Hotcakes unsuccessfully tried to give our LIII a hug and a kiss.


Today there were crying babies, upset ladies, and a man trying to fix his Mercedes.


I worked with our LIII for a few hours before closing. We helped an 8th grade boy find pictures of an obscure rainforest. The LIII told me notice the mother's expression. That boy is not a good age!


Our mistake- the audiotapes were accidentally sensitized. So, the tapes were ruined.
The customer returned the tapes today and said he listened to each one for 15 minutes and heard nothing at all.
Poor guy, wasted 30 minutes of his time just hoping to hear the book...


We told the woman with the suitcase of books we can't take her donation / trash.


Do you need a book so you can write about Louisiana? No, I'm not gonna write. That will take a long time. I'm gonna print.


I helped a woman make signs about her lost cat. Proofing isn't a service we provide, so these signs had plenty of errors. She made 30 copies! Hope she finds the kitty.
Note: Yesterday she was at the branch about 50 miles away. Maybe kitty jumped a freight train?


That's all for today folks!

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Tame Tuesday

I was ready for a Twilight Zone Tuesday, but it was really tame today. Well, except for the woman who wanted to look through every Scribner's book for some essays. Didn't know the author, edition, title; no syllabus, plus she was super stubborn.

And the elderly man who told me I don't want these damn books.

Other than those 2 vignettes, I must say it was very tame today. Sort of disappointing, but didn't ruin my day. Just not that much entertainment today!

Saturday, June 11, 2005


I see the sisters who used to come to my computer class. I say I haven't seen you in a while and one of them responds we got our own computa. Five minutes later she asks me for help to get to yahoo (our "go" button is disabled). She is so shy she turns red.


Man asks for a copy of a reference book we don't have anymore b/c it = online. He said I wanna eyeball it.


Request for the movie Cap in January, i.e. Captain January. Then the man in his 70's wants a book about collecting Barbies.


Is it really necessary to wear a snow parka when it is just drizzling?


"Hey, it's me. Can you show me your biggest dictionary? Wow, that thing is huge." Ten minutes later- "Hey, come here. I found my word. Can you pronounce it?" Word = agrement. It was the "you again" woman.


Today, 11 or 12?
Today is June 11.


Two kids want help to make business cards. They want to start a cleaning business. Cute.


Man who sometimes remembers my name and never remembers I'm "married" strolls by and says Hi Amy. I'm going to name him Max for this blog.


So can you help me in the kiddie department? I'm looking for the Cinderella our parents bought for us, not the one where she is on an island.


Can you help me with the computer. I need help, I am a computer literate.


Guy asks for movie Popul Vuh.
I've never heard of it, so I think he's trying to say Purple Blue.


Bahai esperanto guy comes again.


Loud conversation: That's my favorite word, really. (Says it with different inflections). Yeah, so I was foreclosed, booted into the street. I lost everything; they kicked me out. I told myself just keep your eyes open and your mouth shut. I said thank you Lord Jesus; this is my time to prove myself to you. My mother-in-law has my marriage certificate, has my social security card... she won't give it back. You know what? That's discrimination. I have my first amendment rights.


Who wrote Oliver Twist?
Charles Dickens.
Ok, so it is Tom Dickens?


I asked a guy who transferred from this branch to another how he likes his new assignment. He said, it is weird, ya know, I feel like I'm really in a library. It's so quiet sometimes, I don't know what to do. Working at (my branch) was really like working in a factory- the sheer volume of books processed, the phone ringing off the hook, and the insanity of it all...

Friday, June 10, 2005

asks again

This woman asks about once a week if we have Generation S.L.U.T. Each time she asks for it she spells it out because she's afraid to say it. She also requested Die Cheerleader Die and Perks of being a Wallflower.

Kinda reminds me of highschool hell.


Do you have Faulkner's A Light in August.
I turn the TV off, TV's a waste. Thanks you, walks 20 feet, thanks again. TV's a waste.

Travel Agent

Caller- I want directions to Marriott in (city).

I find them and start to read them off.

Caller- Oh, so not take the (blank) freeway, turn right, turn left, then third on the right?

Oh, I thought you needed the directions.

Caller- I do.

I verify the directions, and all I hear on the other end is huge yawning. Big time yawning. Did she call just for her own entertainment?


I went to help a woman in the word processing room-- waaaay down at the other end of the liberry. When I walked in the room she said, oh... you again and laughed. I should have said the same thing!

Horse racing guy

As I'm pushing my cart to the office the horse racing guy tells me you outtr be out there training a horse.

Fallen and I can't get up

I've fallen off the list of waiting people for this book.


Is it really necessary for people to bust out the umbrellas in the drizzle?

New one

A new cell phone ring: a horse neighing. Isn't that annoying...


Index cards, do you sell them here.
Nope, not a service we provide.


Can I buy this book?
Nope, not a service we provide.


Note: Being a liberrian is easy: all you need to say is Nope, not a service we provide.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Oh no...

Guy from yesterday who says remember me? asks me again. He says, I'm gonna tell you some'em. I've been single all my life, my parents are gone. Can I help you find a book? No, where are the magazines? I show him. Um, I can't read those magazines. How much are they? Are these the good ones.

Returns to the desk. I'm gonna show you a picture of me from a long long time ago. Can you tell me your first and last name. My name is Amy. Well Stephanie, you have a nice day. I can't read. You punch the buttons too fast.


Buh-bye now!

Need a replacement

I had this vase (she says it to rhyme with boss, just how Gaylord Focker says it in that awesome scene in Meet the Parents) and dropped it. It's smashed. I want an exact replica of it. I bought it in (a city far away) in the mid 1980's. Can you find their phone number?

Weed it please

Today's treasure in the bookdrop: A stained, warped, and smelly book of Captain Underpants.

Better Eyesight

Guy wants info on psychic healing and the Bate's method to better eyesight. I show him references I find in my databases and he whips out his magnifying glass to read it!

Car Repair

Hi Miss Know it All- I need some books on car repair.

I show him the car repair section as well as the database.

So I can do this at home?


But then I wouldn't need to come in and bother you. Can you believe it? I'm gonna be driving next month. You better clear the roads.

Oh dear, I think his electric wheelchair is enough.

Law Forms

I need to find law forms so I can get rid of my lean.

I show him the legal books.

So I just find the one I need and rip it out?

No no no no no!

UFO guy

I know the government hides stuff from us everyday, but I'm intrigued by UFO's and Area 51. I mean, wow, totally intriguing.

I've got a problem

Phone caller- I've got a problem. There are rats all over my house. I need traps. Whom can I call for help?

The liberry of course.


Let me find you the ISBN.


The ISBN is the standard number for the book.

Sorry, I don't know liberry-speak.

Nobel Peace Prize

The 1962 Nobel Peace Prize guy, I heard either his first or last name was Einus. Actually, it was Linus Pauling. Oh.

Background Noises

Guy screaming out Santa Claus.

Other one calling me Cutie, Hotcakes every time I walk by...


Guy brings a torn page and asks for scissors. I tell him we don't lend our scissors. He gives me the page and asks me to cut it. I say, did you just tear this out of a book? Oh, no, no I didn't.


This book

Guy with glasses taped together with a band-aid:

Does Border's have this book? Can I go there today? Will four dollars be enough? So how long you've been doing this?

Acting Business

Dad- I'm trying to get my kids in the acting business. All I found was this (a 2002 guide to modeling and talent scouting agencies). Damn, don't ya have anything else?

Let me check, no, that is the most up to date book on the subject.

So like, they totally forgot to write another book since 2002? How did they do that?

We just didn't purchase the most recent edition for our collection. You can probably go to the bookstore and find a recent copy.

So I just go over to Nobles? Damn.

I can order you a similar book that's more updated. I'll just need your card.

Of course he doesn't have a card so I send him down to fill out the application.

He huffs back- I just found out you are affiliated with the branch across town. I've been a bad boy, and I'm not going to pay my fines. I will just go to Nobles.

You do that.


Do you have a book on backpacking? I found one in the bookstore but they wanted $26 for it. I'm moving soon.

[I find one.]

Thank God, thank God.

Help us

wife- Can you help us, what do you call that?
husband- Will.
wife- Yes, can you help us find will? To make will?


Can I use computer to copy to disc to copy to printer?


I go to computer, ok?


What is the procedures for using a computer?


Can you get me on a computer?


"Let's sit over here. We're gonna discuss public liberry safety."


Woman with heavy accent asks me for the movie "Freewheeling." Nothing there. I ask her if it is one word or two. She doesn't know. I ask if she knows who is in the movie. She doesn't. I ask what it is about. She says "I think it is about a whale." Ohhhh... could it be "Free Willy?" "Yes! That's it! You are so kind!"

I'm still laughing

First thing this am he who remembers my name says [let my name = Amy]--------

Good Morning Amy! My, what white teeth you have. They are always so so white. So, do you floss?
Do you use Listerine and a great big toothbrush?
Well me too! (Not exactly evident). Where's the quiet area (in the background the construction crew is hammering away).
The quiet area is usually over there, but not today.
What are they doing, drying the floor?
No, they are building a reading center, a place where people can come and learn how to read.
I hope they make two quiet rooms. I would really like that. So, are you married?
(no pause) YES!
So Amy, have a nice day!

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Today, 6-8-2005, or why I have a headache!

I'm walking into work and I see a frequent customer, the one who is so hyper and must always borrow a pen, not golf pencil. She's so joyous and tells me she just went there. Now she is meeting with Condi Rice. When she open her own business she will visit. She thanked me for my patience and said this little liberry has been so good to me.

[OK, but we're not little. We won the prize for circulating the most books and serving the most patrons in the county! yea...]


Woman with broken English is looking for books on n-u-r-s-i-n-g. I show her the books in the pregnancy section; then she tells me she wants to become a nurse. Joke's on me.


Guy (who used to play video games) wants books on the atrocities of the Crusades. The people had to search for their own food. That's why they became excellent trappers and good at archery. It was an atrocity. This is personal research.


Two porn guys are escorted out of the building twice. Five more hours left of the day. They'll be back.


Annoyed woman asks if there have been budget cuts because "the whole world is here and you are the only one at the reference desk." Sorry, four of our liberrians either retired or transferred.


I want part of math. Which part? Gebra.


Man wants to apply on the line for a British visa. He doesn't get the concept and wants me to do it for him.


Woman wants to research local community. She wants to buy property there and thinks the railroad used to stop there. The real estate agent tells her she is wrong. She wants me to prove she is right. Second day in a row she asks about this.


Dingbat asks me over and over and over times ten squared (and then some) for help cutting and pasting something into word.


Help with MS Publisher.


Remember I'm the only one at the desk. Guy comes up asking for a citation about a law that required automobiles to pull over and hide in the bushes when they approached a horse drawn carriage in traffic. He needed the material yesterday. He heard about the law on the History Channel. I eventrually found some related information! Yeah!


More help with MS Publisher.


Would you like me to order the book from another branch? No, I don't want to pay. You don't have to pay. Are you sure, I think it is a dollar.


Yahoos I can't get in. Just me? No, the server is probably down. That means the problem is on their end, there is nothing I can do here to help you. Sorry. Just me?


I wish I knew sign language. Well, actually today I learned the sign for "shut up." Two deaf teens, troublemakers to the extreme, always use their disability to their advantage. Today they sat down at 5:30, so I wrote on a piece of paper, your time is over at 6:00. At 7:30 I walked by and asked them to leave. There were two little girls who just arrived and wanted a turn. One of them gave me the "shut up" sign, and the other slapped me.


I call the other branch and ask them to hold a book for a patron. I ask the patron to spell their last name and first initial. Why is it that the first initial question is so befuddling? I should just ask them what their first name is.


I want The Spy by Norman Garbo. Here's the call number: F Gar. No, that's not what I saw in the computer. It said 385 something (i.e. the section about railroads). I go to Amazon and show her the details.


The "how do I apply for a casino job" people came today- 4 individuals. They asked me ten times ten to the tenth questions, and then some. At one point I said, I can't tell you how to work through the application. You'll have to read through the directions. We provide the internet service, not the service of interpreting websites.


I want to buy a ceramic figurine of the pope.


I want a list of all the public and private schools in the area. And a list of job openings they offer.


A guy with several earrings, eyebrow rings, nose rings, you name it rings asked for Book of Shadows. We don't have it, I can order it. He doesn't have a card, doesn't want one.


She's ragging on me. I told her it isn't fair, her time is up. You don't get me, do you. You are clueless, you don't understand. She is ragging on me.


Porn guy returns, what did I say...


My mom wants to know if I can work here. I'm in a high school. (and friend says) I'm in a high school.


Local support groups on the right to privacy - I can't find it in the catalog.


Can I climb through the roped off construction area to use the copy machine?


I argue some more about the time limit with the porn guy.


Guy who watched the scene with the deaf guys: That was pretty funny. Real entertaining.


I want a book with just words, lots and lots of words. A dictionary? No, just words, lots and lots of words.


I can't find my friend Sam Smith on googles. He lives in New York City.


My disc is lost, where is place?


Hi, I'm reading the biography of Nelson Mandela and I was wondering... is he dead?


I walked by the children's section and heard: look at daddy, sprawled out on the floor. That was freaky.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Not sure

I'm looking for a children's book. The name of the author = Ennis. That could be the first or last name, I dunno.

What is the story about? Where did you hear about it?

In the newspaper. The author is supposed to be real popular.

Last Sunday's paper?

No, but real recent, during the past 2 years. I can't believe you don't know it off the top of your head.

Abbreviated RefGrunt

So tell me about this thing, on the line.
Porn guy is escorted out.
Girl asks me for help about 100 times to print the lyrics of all these Nine Inch Nails songs.
Man asks for a book on American culture. I ask him for the specifics, are you taking a class. He says yes. Which class? The first one.
I wanna donate some books. Okay, we accept a limit of three bags. (Not boxes, we have enough cockroaches). You just need to take them to the back door and ring the doorbell. No honey, they are in a huge suitcase. I want you to have it. (We aren't a garbage agency; it's not a service we provide).

First thing

I was walking to the office today- my hands full of books I intended to read last weekend. I see a man raising his hand like a first grader - oh me me me! I say can I help you, and he says remember me? I say no. He says I'm Bob, and I don't know how to read.

Rotund Man

A rotund man came to the desk to ask for books for when he is stranded in the wilderness- what kind of berries can he eat...

Insight from Thomas Mann

Thomas Mann has some insight about the PPF--

"I tell them if they will occupy themselves with the study of mathematics, they will find in it the best remedy against the lusts of the flesh." -- Thomas Mann

You mean they might have listened to me?

I can't count the number of times I've said the copy machine is by the back window. I never thought anyone listened. However, now that the machines have been moved (lots of construction happening) people ask me where I put the machines. I can't win!

Monday, June 06, 2005

Am I wearing a sign?

I think I must be wearing a sign invisible to me but bright as ever to freaks. I was walking with my friend from BN to Target (my day off) and this guy comes up to us and asks if we are near the local college. We say we're about 30 minutes from it. Then he goes into his story, but first tells my friend that she has a great smile and that red is my color. He says, I have OCD, I give complements. I haven't had anything to drink in a year. I'm sober. So when I went to a party the other night the cops asked for my ID, and they said they have a warrant out for my arrest. I didn't do nothing. My first time in jail. I was just released today. They gave me my wallet, but mailed the cash home. (Sure). So I was wondering if you girls could spare some cash to help me get home. I swear you girls are my best friends in this city.

I looked at my watch and said I'm meeting someone and I'm already late. My friend said we don't carry cash.
Why me???

Sunday, June 05, 2005


I need the contact information for Braun, the coffee maker. I have a grinder I got for $8 and I want to pay them to fix it.


Don't ya think it might cost more than $8 in shipping to get it fixed?

Jerry Seinfeld on Libraries

"That's what the library is, it's a government-funded pathetic friend. That's why everybody kind of bullies the library, "Maybe I'll bring it back on time, maybe I'll bring it back late. What are you gonna do, charge me a nickel? Oooh, I'm so scared."

from Sein Language

Saturday, June 04, 2005

he returns

Guy who remembers my name today returns to say hi (my name). Then just stares at me for a long time. I'm thinking ... if brains were gasoline he wouldn't have enough to power an ant's motorcycle half way across a penny. Then he asks, are you guys open on the 4th of July? No. Oh, cuz I don't know when your blockbuster season is.

Then he sees the security guard and says hi (name). Yes, on a first name basis with the guard. Then he whispers to the guard, hey can you smell the alcohol on my breath?

No scanner?

Do you guys have a scanner?

No, you'd have to go to kinkos just down the street.

What, no scanner! Why not?

That's not a service we provide. Sorry.

Dad, we have to go to Kinko.

PPF returns

So what's sin?

(Sin = looking @ porn in front of kids). It is sine. It means opposite over hypotenuse.

Oh, whatever.


Then 2 hs sophomores hear me talking math so they ask for help on their final. They are working on probability, not my cup of tea. My parents almost named me Amy, so why not call me Abstract Amy. Anything having to do with numbers, probability, or calculators is a nightmare. I tell them it has been way too long since I studied factorials and permutations, sorry, I can't help you.

gay version

Do you have Romeo and Julio?

Older Man

Yes, can I help you?

Whispers- I need information on fraud and foreclosure.

Ok, we have a few legal guides on that subject.

Actually, I need information on how to nail a crooked attorney to the wall. We don't deal in peanuts. My grandson was evicted and we're suing because he lost his lifestyle. We don't deal in peanuts. We are gonna get at least $150,000. First we'll sue in his name, then again in mine.

Dial up

My friend here is looking for the site for Ambien.

Here it is.

Oh, so do we have to dial up googles first?

My initial thought

My initial thought is oh no, not him again, but then I remind myself that I'll probably get some material to blog. He comes to the desk- hey, I haven't seen you in forever. My girlfriend needs help with this application. I look at it and say just fill in your phone number on this line and bring it to the front desk to get your card. She asks him, honey, what is our phone number?

While she is getting the card, he asks me if I can find this "rattlebrain contest" where he can win prizes. I can't find it, but he keeps pestering me to continue to look. Still no luck.

Messed up

I tried to type google dot com and it got way messed up.

Precalc Porn Freak

Precalc Porn Freak (PPF) is back. He makes me laugh as he sits at the table with a pencil and a furrowed brow. He hasn't asked for "help" yet, but the day is not over.

Remembered my name

Today he remembered my name and strolled by to say hi (my name). I sure didn't know you worked weekends. He sounded as if he hadn't seen me in years.

Cat fight

Woman screams at a guy who snagged the computer hey, I got here before you! Guy replies, what are you gonna do, arrest me? Woman says that would be the logical answer.

ya know why?

Yesterday my colleague said hi to the guy who comes by several times a day to introduce himself. He just nodded his head, but returned ten minutes later and said ya know why I didn't say hi to you five minutes ago? I had a mouthful of water.

Math is Power Posted by Hello

Friday, June 03, 2005

from Porn to Precalc

Today we caught our loud friend looking at porn, so the security guard helped us ban him from the computers. What does he do? Pulls a precalc book off the shelf to read.

[*Note to Marian (who no longer works at this branch, so sad)-- this = the attention starved guy who wears the blue baseball cap with the white stripes.]

Thanks to a colleague, blue cap guy finds out I know math. He asks me to explain the concept of limits. Like, if f(x) = (x + 2)/x for all x except zero and is undefined at f(0), what is the limit as x --> c. First, he can't grasp the concept of f(x). And what is c? Then he is totally confused that there are 2 x's in the equation. Can that really be? I graph it and explain that there is a hole in the graph at the point x=0. Way beyond him. (Why the juice did he pick up a precalc book? Why didn't he just go home?) He returns several times for more "help."

He tells me there is really no such thing as a negative number. It is just a way to rationalize the idea so people can understand. Also, the concept of zero is bogus. Zero is really an infinite idea.

Uh huh, I hear ya. You're a candidate to become a mathematician. You're so logical.

Um, yeah, what is the limit of you as you continue to approach the desk?

There's a reason I'm not a math teacher. I have no patience for these people who claim it is way over their head when all they need to do is TRY.

There's your solution

I can't get into yahoos.

Sorry, there is nothing I can do about that.

Then I'll just call them.

Thursday, June 02, 2005


Okay, I just sent that down to the printer. You can pick it up. It will be fifteen cents.

Is there an employee discount? I work at the neighbor branch.


If that is true then you know the policy. And, they pay us the big bucks so we can afford fifteen cents a page!


HS Student: Do you have anything on Shakespeare?
Me: What kind of information are you looking for?
HS: Anything.
Me: What is title of your report? How long does it have to be? Are you looking for a particular work, criticism, and/or a biography?
HS: You mean when is it due? I dunno. Just give me anything about Shakespeare.

Can I help you?

This morning a woman was underneath the table and fiddling with all the wires. I walked by and asked her if I could help. She looked at me like I was from another planet. She was probably trying to steal the headphones or mouse & I caught her red handed.


Do you have a book about how I can make a bridge out of toothpicks without using a glue gun? It is for my daughter's physics class. She's the smartest one in the class and has and A+ and we can't afford for her to miss any points.


Can we check our mail on yahoos?


Oh, cuz at the other branch they said NO.

Remembers my name

A couple weeks ago I was happy because this one guy forgot my name. However, today he remembered it. He strolled by my desk three times to say hi (my name), I am (his name).

1. I am (his name).
2. Is that clock broken? No, it is 12:00. Darn, I missed my lunch. (Don't you know, you gotta motor when you gotta motor according to the guy who must live at the same place).
3. Is this the calendar of events for this branch? (No, it is the one for a branch in China). Oh, can I have one? Is this the only branch in this city?

Just be like a tree and leaf me alone! Scram!

Popular Cell Phone Ringtones

Fur Elise

Ride of the Valkyries


Rondo alla Turca


Scotland the Brave

Dance of the Sugarplum Fairy


William Tell Overture

Here Comes the Bride

Badly-recorded clip from some hit song that just sounds like very loud static


Being a Librarian Makes You Famous

The other day I went to see the new Star Wars movie, and while I was waiting outside with my brother a guy came up to me.

Him: Do I know you from somewhere?

Me: Well, I work at the library...

Him: Which one?

Me: The [Suburb] branch.
Note: the movie theater is nowhere near [Suburb].

Him: Oh yeah, I go there all the time to use the internet!

However, next time I saw him at the library he didn't say anything.

The Story of Marian's Violin

This was actually the same day as the woman leaving her dentures at the computer.
It was a good day.

Anyway, what happened was that two Arabic-speaking women (who also spoke some English) came in with a man who only spoke Russian. I'm not sure how they knew each other--they seemed like they'd only just met, but the ladies seemed to think that the library would be a good place to get help. (They were right!)

The man was saying something about e-mail, but of course he didn't have an e-mail account and I was dreading having to try to sign him up for one. Then he brought out a letter he (or somebody) had written to Arnold Schwarzenegger, asking for help getting into showbiz.

I thought it might actually be easier if he just went and mailed the letter at the post office, but no one could communicate this idea to him until I thought of getting the Russian phrasebook. Of course there were all kinds of things like "Can I get these shoes cleaned while I wait?" and "Please tell the chambermaid to leave extra towels," but nothing along the lines of "You are crazy if you think Arnold Schwarzenegger is going to take time out of his busy schedule to help you become an actor, Russian-Speaking Dude."

I did find something about the post office though, and the ladies (who at this point were pretty much on the floor laughing) said they would take him over there. I even got him an envelope and addressed it to Arnold (who should have a whole special department for Immigrants who Want to Break Into Showbiz).

Anyway, Russian-Speaking Dude was so grateful for my expert help that he gave me this lovely violin keychain that also is a flashlight.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Brick Red Crayola

An extremely fragrant gentleman came to ask for the updated Star Trek Encyclopedia. We have a copy in reference, then I define reference. The air smelled so bad, but I have my solution. The obvious is hand sanitizer, but my trick is crayola crayons. I'm such a crayon snob: I can't stand RoseArt or other generic waxy brands. But Crayolas are the best. Today the Brick Red one saved my life. If Crayola perfume existed, I'd buy it by the bucket!

Brick Red Crayola Posted by Hello

Marian's Violin Posted by Hello


Today I'm weeding medical books. I found a dirty Q-tip as a bookmark in a book about lupus. Then I washed my hands real real good!

Where was she when I needed her?

Where was the Avon lady when I needed her? Today this man in his 50's wanted to know about the history of Avon. Products they have sold in the past, antiques, collectibles. I was thinking, is he thinking of the same Avon I am? He must have been, because he was happy when I found the site.

another service we don't provide

No, we don't have an x-ray viewing machine.