Saturday, July 26, 2003

In the Morning:

Study room?
Today's paper.
"Novels about George Washington." Do you mean, biographies? "Yeah, biographies and bibliographies. Primary sources."
"I can't find Great Northern Iron in Valueline." He needed the Expanded edition.
It's been so long since I've been in the library. Everything's changed." However, our public copiers are pretty much the same as 20 years ago.
"I'm glad to see you here because you will find me what I want."
Bureau of Citizenehip & Immigration Services branch office.
When is our next book sale?
"Does your version of Word have the mail merge wizard?"
Local sales tax.
City map.
Leap of faith, by Queen Noor.

In the Afternoon:

Book club signup.
Donald Goines books.
His password won't work ... whoops, yes it does.
Books on growing orchids.
"Can I extend the time on this book?"
He wants to know how to tear a map out of a magazine.
"Black, white and angry," by Andrew Hacker. I pulled up Two nations: black and white, seperate, unequal," by Andrew Hacker, but she says that isn't the one. Later, we have this discussion: Ma'am the only book we own by an author named Michael Myers is about computer networking. "That could be the one." It has nothing to do with race relations. "You sure? I'd like to look at it anyway."
Printer advice.
"I need an AM readio in Milwaukee ... news, the call letters."
"Can I take Morningstar home with me?" Haha no.
"Spanish for dummies." Actually, she wanted any Spanish instruction book she could find.
Printer advice.
Printer advice.
Books on real estate investing.
Books on EBay
Printer advice.
State lottery jackpot estimation.
Books with Spanish words pronounced. Surprisingly hard to find.
We no longer take IDs for the computers, ma'am.

Internet Signups: 39

Friday, July 25, 2003

I'm off duty today, but the scene of the kids getting hit yesterday won't go away.

All I did was go up to some children and tell them to stop running. They stopped running.

The adults in charge of them were both there. They angrily told their kids to come over. These adults were trying to follow library rules.

The kids were then shouted at, and hit. One fell on the ground.

The girl who fell down when she was hit wasn't theirs. These parents were white, she was black, and a little older than the white kids (who endured their slaps like it was nothing new). When she was on the ground she looked surprised and afraid. She was "in the care" of these two awful people. I saw a black man hanging around with them earlier. Maybe he was her father. He wasn't around when she was knocked to the ground.

Does he know? Does he care?

And the two white kids, possible actual children to the couple got hit too. They didn't fall down. As I said, they seemed to accept it.

How did I allow this? I watched big people shouting and hitting little people and I walked away because I didn't know what to do. Now that I've had time to digest it I would have stopped it. Maybe.

Safe at home I imagine me standing up to them and saying something like You don't do shit like this in my library! Cue dramatic music!

But when it's happening before your eyes, and you need to get back to the desk ...

I fucked up.

Thursday, July 24, 2003

In the Morning:

Bathroom request.
Three computer crashes.
Pay phone?
Melanin: the chemical key to black greatness, by Carol Barnes, The African origin of biological psychiatry, by Richard King, The science of melanin, by T. Owens Moore, and African holistic health, by Llaila Africa.
Computer workshop question.
Printer advice.
Two computer crashes.
Genealogy helper.
A back issue of US news and world report.
She tries to access the WWW using Microsoft Word.
Apply for a card at the front desk, sir.
The long walk home, starring Sissy Spacek and Whoopie Goldberg.
Movie star addresses.
Books by Iyanla Vanzant.
"Can I get this covered in plastic?"
Today's paper.
Stretching, by Bob Anderson.
The meeting room is downstairs, sir.
The copier is over there.
"Is the printer plugged up?"
Watsons go to Birmingham, 1963, by Christopher Paul Curtis, The giver, by Lois Lowry, A wrinkle in time, by Madeline L'Engle, and Island of the blue dolphins, by Scott O'Dell. All for a sixty year old man.
Lady, stop that tuneless whistling! (I didn't really say that). Later, I saw her at a table stabbing a finger at something in the paper while hissing.

In the Afternoon:

Number of days in July.
Taber's Cyclopedic Medical Dictionary.
How to recharge your debit card.
Did an exam we're going to proctor arrive?
A patron doesn't have her ID and proceeded to whine at us about it.
Addicted, by Zane, and Baby Momma Drama, by Carl Weber.
Six Flags employment information.
W-7 form.
Don't run!
Today's paper.
I go to tell some small children not to run. Their parents, or whoever was in charge of them, then shouted at them to "Come here!" Then the kids were each hit--HARD. One even fell over. It was appalling. I've broken up a couple of fights at the library before, but I'd never encountered anything like this. I had no idea what to do.
The bell jar, by Sylvia Plath, Their eyes were watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston, Slaughterhouse-five, by Kurt Vonnegut, and My Antonia, by Willa Cather. The same list as yesterday. The patron said there were 25 people in her class. We're in trouble.
Ifa divination (no author).
The card catalog's over there, ma'am.

Internet Signups: I lost count.

Wednesday, July 23, 2003

In the Afternoon:

He lost his library card and I get the whole story, and I still can't help him out.
"Tapes on learning spanish. I got the spanish tapes on learning english already."
Printer advice.
"Where's the sci-fi?"
"Do you have scanners?"
The girl has lost her book club sheet. "I guess I'll just have to read more." Aww, someone call the ALA PR people.
Printer advice.
"Can I leave these books here for now?" He never came back.
"Books for children whose parents are divorcing." Okay. "In spanish." Argh.
A man checks up on his ILL request.
Computer crash.
Printer advice.
Red dragon, by Thomas Harris. Or rather, "I want the book on how they made the movie."
Printer advice.
Sleep disorders.
Printer advice.
Printer advice.
The song Cell therapy by Goodie Mob. Or Goody Mob. The bib records couldn't make up their mind.
I spell a word for a patron three times.
"Where is (Librarian Z)?"
A book called "Sexual Harassment." That's all she knows about it.

In the Evening:

Citibank's 1-800 number.
I hear a long story by a lady on how one has typewriters any more.
He is surprised to learn the web page he wants to print is 85 pages long.
Social sciences books.
Maya Angelou books.
"My disc is stuck in the machine." But it wasn't. He had already put it away. An embarrassed grin.
I show a man the 300s. "And where are the 400s?"
Number of immigrants in the county.
"Does Microsoft Word have pictures?"
"You got more computers now ... Movin' on up!"
1996 Geo Prizm repair manual.
The bell jar, by Sylvia Plath, Their eyes were watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston, Slaughterhouse-five, by Kurt Vonnegut, and My Antonia, by Willa Cather. Another high school reading list.
Foreign currency trading, by Russel R Wasendorf Sr (and Jr).
Email to local paper, and another long, unnecessary explanation by the patron.
"Is (Librarian Q) there?"
Passport applications.
Printer advice.
Strong's concordance to the Bible, and King James Bible, by God, or King James. I'm not sure.
Items by Brian Tracy (He's produced dozens of books and videos). Which one? "Any one."
I hadn't meant to tell you this, by Jacqueline Woodson.
You check out books over there, sir.
Books by Dale Carnegie.
Books on post-traumatic stress disorder.

Internet Signups: 45

Monday, July 21, 2003

In the Morning:

Friday's paper.
Blindside, by Catherine Coulter.
Killing Hour, by Lisa Gardner.
Social Security Act.
Discs can be bought at the circulation desk, ma'am.
Color printer advice.
Computer crash.
Thursday's paper.
Stapler, and when that one didn't work I had to find another.
I don't know what link is the one you want to click, ma'am.
Computer crash.
Computer crash.
Computer crash.
Type, ma'am
Drawing books.
Computer crash.
More drawing books.
Sorry, we don't have a color scanner.
She points, vaguely, "Young adult fiction is ... um ..."
He needed a red pen. Happily, I found one.
Complaint about the noise at the internet terminals.
Printer advice.
Yesterday's paper.
The man did not understand the printer advice.
He still doesn't.
Food service safety books.

In the Afternoon:

Investors business daily.
Paper and pencil.
Books by Emilie Richards.
Classifieds from last week.
Don't run!
More newspapers.
There is a disproportunate number of attractive young women in the library at this time. I should investigate this trend.
Books on body piercing.
Long ago she put a hold on The coldest winter ever, by Sister Souljah, but there is a copy on the shelf. Oops.
Computer workshop schedule.
Martindale-Hubbell. She wants to take it home. She is disappointed.
Workshop schedule.

Internet Signups: 58